Report: Raptors promoting assistant Nick Nurse to head coach

AP Photo/Carlos Osorio
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Raptors assistant coach Nick Nurse had been favored to ascended to the team’s head coach for a while.

Now, he’s actually getting the job.

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:

Nurse succeeds Dwane Casey, who raised expectations even higher than he could meet and got hired. They won’t fall much, if at all, for Nurse.

The Raptors have an expensive payroll led by Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan. They’ve succeeded plenty in the regular season – only to disappoint repeatedly in the playoffs. Nurse will be judged on his ability to guide Toronto deeper into the postseason before its core passes its prime.

Nurse helped revamp the Raptors’ offense, diversifying it with the goal of more playoff success. The results were mixed in the first year, but maybe over a larger sample – with Nurse now in charge – there will be even more improvement.

It’s a little odd for Toronto to fire Casey and replace him with a member of his own staff. But the Pacers recently did that with Frank Vogel and Nate McMillan, and that turned out well.

There’s value in continuity. The Raptors wanted some – just not too much.