Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard has made his choice for next coach of the team clear, publicly pushing for Lakers assistant Jason Kidd in interviews with The Athletic and Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports.
The Blazers are looking to replace Terry Stotts, who mutually parted ways with the team Friday after nine seasons. Haynes reported Lillard is expected to have “major input” in who the Blazers’ coaching search.Meanwhile, Lillard told Shams Charania and Jason Quick of The Athletic that he is also a fan of Clippers assistant Chauncey Billups. Lillard added it would be “ideal” if the Blazers’ next coach is someone with experience, seemingly meaning experience as a head coach.
With that in mind, Kidd would be Lillard’s preference, Haynes reported.
Earlier Friday, Haynes reported that the Blazers were expected to make Kidd a primary target.
Stotts was the only coach for whom Lillard played in the NBA, with each arriving in Portland in 2012. The Blazers have made eight straight playoff appearances, but have lost in the first round in four of the past five seasons.
“I love Terry,” Lillard told The Athletic. “And I will miss him as my coach.”
Kidd, 48, has coached both the Nets and Bucks, compiling a 183-190 record in five seasons overall.