After a tumultuous 2022-23 campaign, the Toronto Raptors fired Nick Nurse as head coach on Friday. Former Boston Celtics head coach Ime Udoka is a “serious candidate” to replace Nurse, Wojnarowski added.
Bleacher Report’s Chris Haynes, citing sources, reports that the “Houston Rockets are targeting Nick Nurse as a strong candidate for their vacant head coach opening.” The decision comes after the 55-year-old nurse said on March 31 that at the end of the year, she would “take a few weeks to see where I am.”
There has been speculation that his job is in question amid Toronto’s struggles. Nurse has spent 10 years with the Raptors organization and has been at the helm for the last five. He led the team to playoff appearances in each of his first four years and a play-in tournament berth this past season, where it was eliminated by the Chicago Bulls.
Still, the former point guard should be commended for the second-half turnaround that helped engineer the game. The Raptors were seven games under .500 more than halfway through the season, but they won in February and March to earn a chance to contend in the playoffs.
In his five seasons in charge of the team, Nurse has a 227-163 career record. He helped lead Toronto to its first championship in franchise history in 2019 and he was named the NBA Coach of the Year in 2020. After letting Nurse go, Toronto began searching for the right man to lead the team back to prominence the next season.