Celtics coaching update: Chauncey Billups, Ime Udoka among candidates to be interviewed for HC job, per report

Several names have started to emerge in the Boston Celtics’ search for a new head coach. Brad Stevens, who is leading the interview process for Boston, has already received permission to speak to a few prospective candidates, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Stevens has completed interviews with assistants on his staff, and now plans to speak with several assistant coaches from around the league’s landscape, including Chauncey Billups from the Los Angeles Clippers, Darvin Ham and Charles Lee of the Milwaukee Bucks, Jamahl Mosley of the Dallas Mavericks and Ime Udoka of the Brooklyn Nets. Boston’s candidate pool is expected to be expansive, per Wojnarowski.   

In addition to those five candidates, a couple of other names have also been tied to the vacancy in Boston. Los Angeles Lakers assistant coach Jason Kidd and former Atlanta Hawks coach Lloyd Pierce are both expected to be candidates for the gig, according to Yahoo Sports’ Chris Haynes. Prior to serving as an assistant with the Lakers, Kidd was a head coach for both the Nets and Bucks. Other candidates are also likely to emerge as more teams are eliminated from postseason contention. 

Given the magnitude of the decision, Boston shouldn’t be in any sort of a rush. Being the head coach of the Celtics is one of the highest-profile jobs in the entire NBA, so it’s not surprising that there is a lot of interest in the position, and it’s equally unsurprising the Celtics are planning to cast a wide net. After all, they ultimately want to make sure they hire the right person for the job. 

The situation in Boston is a unique one, as Stevens is searching for his own successor after coaching the Celtics for the last eight seasons. Stevens just moved into his new role as president of basketball operations earlier this month following Danny Ainge’s retirement. Stevens feels that his experience as the coach of the Celtics makes him uniquely qualified to successfully select the team’s next coach. 

“I do think I have a good insight into our team as Danny now steps away,” Stevens said, via ESPN. “I feel like I’ve got a good idea of what we do well, what we don’t do so well, and I’ve been doing this for eight years. I’ve been in that locker room with some of those guys for a long time. … They’ll get to play for a great coach, with some similarities maybe, but also some great new fresh perspectives. That’s a good thing, so I’m looking forward to finding that person.” 

Finding that new head coach is Stevens’ top task this offseason, and though his unique experience and perspective sounds good on paper, only time will tell if moving him from the sideline to the front office was the right move for the Celtics. 

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