NBA Coach of the Year Dwane Casey Fired, Blame LeBron James

May 12, 2018, 06:18
NBA Coach of the Year Dwane Casey Fired, Blame LeBron James

The Toronto Raptors had a really great season even though they were swept in the second round of the NBA Playoffs, but fans are already looking ahead to the future.

"After careful consideration, I have decided this is a very hard but necessary step the franchise must take. He was instrumental in creating the identity and culture of who we are as a team, and we are so proud of that".

After yet another postseason sweep, he and the Raptors would fire Dwane Casey. He leaves Toronto as the team's most successful coach boasting an overall record of 320 wins to 238 losses.

Also in line and well known to Ujiri are two members of Casey's coaching staff in Nick Nurse and Rex Kalamian, as well as a former member of his staff in Jerry Stackhouse, who took Toronto's G-League entry to back-to-back league finals, winning the title a year ago.

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The move also comes just two days after Dwane Casey was voted "Coach of the Year" for the 2017-18 season after a vote by the National Basketball Coaches Association.

Ujiri said a few times on Friday that he hoped Casey would be celebrated for all that he has done here.

It is impossible to say that making better in-game adjustments would have swung any of these series the other way.

Casey took the heat for LeBron's game-winner - but made it clear he ordered his team to trap, and force him to give it up.

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Lowry said the Raptors did a lot of things well under Casey. We really do appreciate it and honestly, in some instances I think of this as, in some way, a celebration. Toronto revamped its offence to focus on three-point shooting and better ball movement, and focused on developing the bench, which became the envy of the league.

One thing is for sure, the Coach of the Year speech from Casey is going to be an awkward one but he will probably handle it with class like he has done throughout his time with the organization. DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry are one of the NBA's top backcourt tandems, and a solid group of players fills out the roster. "We'll look everywhere. I'm not ruling out anything".

Regardless of the team or matchup, James has had his way with the Raptors every time they have met in the playoffs over the last several years.

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