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Bryan Colangelo originally wanted Jay Wright instead of Brett Brown

brett brown, jay wright

With Bryan Colangelo out of the picture, rumors have been circulating with regard to his relationship with the Philadelphia 76ers franchise. The latest of which involves head coach Brett Brown.

Speaking with WIP’s Joe Giglio, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski said that the father-son tandem of Bryan and Jerry Colangelo initially wanted Mike D’Antoni as the Sixers’ coach. But he eventually went to the Houston Rockets so they targetted Jay Wright of Villanova:

Woj said that despite the Sixers’ success under Brown, the Colangelos still wanted to bring in Wright, who was their first choice. Apparently, they weren’t aware of how popular Brown was among the fans, management, and the players themselves:

“And even through the great progress they made this year, getting to the second round of the playoffs, winning 50-plus regular season games, there was always a thought in the Colangelos’ mind that they’d get their own guy in there. And the guy they had always targeted, I’m told, was Jay Wright at Villanova. But they underestimated how popular Brett Brown was with the fans, ownership and the players. And the spirit with which Brown carries himself has permeated that organization.”

It’s an interesting tidbit. Good thing that the Sixers are done with the Colangelo era.

Wright himself has commented on possibly moving on to the NBA. In an article by Dana O’Neil for The Athletic, the Villanova coach says that he has no intention of leaving his collegiate team, saying that the NBA does intrigue him but this is not enough to give up his current work:

“The NBA does intrigue me,” Wright said. “That challenge is appealing but it’s not worth giving up working with these guys. The whole thing is, to take a new challenge you have to give up what you have. I don’t want to give up what I have. Would I like to coach in the NBA? Yes. But I have to give this up in order to do that, and I don’t see that happening.”