Most of the time when a team fails to meet expectations the blame falls on the head coach. After several years of being bounced in the first round of the playoffs, the Portland Trail Blazers and Terry Stotts agreed to mutually part ways after nine seasons together.
Stotts led the Blazers to eight consecutive playoff appearances and got as far as the Western Conference Finals in 2019.
Los Angeles Lakers assistant Jason Kidd was immediately linked as a potential replacement for Stotts in Portland and even received a ringing endorsement from Damian Lillard. But according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, Kidd has ultimately decided not to pursue the opportunity:
“Portland’s a first-class organization and will have great candidates for its head coaching job, but I’ve decided not to be one of them,” Kidd told ESPN. “Whoever they choose will have big shoes to fill from Terry (Stotts).”
It seems Lillard stating his opinion of Kidd publically may have backfired as the Lakers’ assistant felt it would place both Lillard and the Blazers in an awkward position as they sift through candidates. Kidd and Lillard are both from Northern California and as a former point guard himself, Kidd would be uniquely able to see things from Lillard’s perspective on the court.
Under Lakers head coach Frank Vogel, it would appear that Kidd has learned several new things since his unsuccessful stints with the Milwaukee Bucks and Brooklyn Nets and that has apparently rehabbed his image in the league. It remains to be seen what other vacancies will open up after the 2021 NBA playoffs conclude, but it seems more than likely that Kidd will get another shot as a head coach.
Kidd linked to Boston Celtics head coaching position
When Danny Ainge stepped down as Boston Celtics President of Basketball Operations and Brad Stevens was promoted to his role, Kidd was also instantly linked as a candidate to fill the head coaching spot. Aside from Kidd, former Atlanta Hawks head coach Lloyd Pierce and L.A. Clippers assistant coach Chauncey Billups are also reportedly on the Celtics’ radar.
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