The 76ers have officially named Nick Nurse head coach, the team announced in a press release.
“I’m honored to be named head coach of the Philadelphia 76ers, a storied franchise in a tradition-rich city,” Nurse said in the statement. “Thank you to Josh Harris, David Blitzer and the ownership group for this incredible opportunity,.
“It’s been a fun challenge coaching against this group over the last five years. Now, I look forward to coaching the Sixers and doing my part to deliver for this tremendous fanbase.”
Nurse, 55, takes over a Sixers team that failed to advance beyond the second round of the playoffs in any of the three seasons under former coach Doc Rivers. This despite having the likes of center and reigning NBA MVP Joel Embiid as the focal point of the roster.
Philadelphia has also had star guard James Harden in each of the past two seasons — and will soon have a big decision to make when it comes to Harden, who’s expected to opt out of his contract this summer. Harden reportedly is seeking a four-year deal.
Either way, Nurse coached the Raptors to the championship in 2019 and expectations will be high. He spent five years as the head coach in Toronto overall, compiling a 227-163 record. The Raptors went 25-16 in the playoffs under Nurse.
“We are absolutely thrilled to welcome Nick Nurse as the new head coach of the Philadelphia 76ers,” president of basketball operations Daryl Morey said. “His championship pedigree and diversity of experience mixed with his uniquely creative approach made him our top priority. We are confident that his leadership and expertise will help us unlock the full potential of our talented roster and bring an exciting new era of championship basketball to Philadelphia.”
Before becoming head coach in Toronto, Nurse spent five years as an assistant. He also coached the Rio Grande Valley Vipers and Iowa Energy of the G League, as well as served as a coach in the British Basketball League.