It’s the end of an era in Canada. After a disastrous season filled with endless mediocrity, Nick Nurse’s time as the Toronto Raptors’ coach seems to be coming to an end. Nurse, the coach of Toronto’s championship roster, is rumored to leave the team after this season. The most common destination (at least in the rumor mill) for Nick Nurse is the Houston Rockets. Now, Bill Simmons corroborated these rumors in his latest podcast episode.
“I’ve never heard so many whispers in so many different corners, where everybody being like, ‘Yeah, he’s out of here,’” Simmons said. “It’s been going on all season.” Simmons also confirmed that all of those whispers mention Nurse looking at the Rockets as a potential destination.
Nurse earned a reputation as one of the best coaches in the league after leading the Raptors to their first championship in his first year. Even after Kawhi Leonard’s departure, Toronto remained a strong contender in the East, only losing to the Celtics in the Bubble semi-finals. It was only after the core’s departure that Nurse’s performance started to be questioned. Now, he’s rumored to be leaving, with Ime Udoka as his potential replacement.
As for his potential destination, the Rockets are perhaps one of the most intriguing destinations for free agent coaches like Nick Nurse. Their core of Kevin Porter Jr, Jalen Green, and Alperen Sengun has tons of potential, albeit with some issues. Nurse would be the perfect coach to fix their troubles on defense… provided, of course, that they’re willing to learn.
Adding more smoke to the fire is the likelihood of James Harden making his return to the Rockets in the offseason. It’s certainly possible, though it hinges heavily on the Sixers’ playoff run. If they get eliminated early… well, we might some old and new faces in Houston soon.