76ers Rumors: Lue, D’Antoni, Donovan, More Expected to Make HC Shortlist

76ers Rumors: Lue, D’Antoni, Donovan, More Expected to Make HC Shortlist

Philadelphia 76ers head coach Brett Brown reacts after receiving a technical foul during the third quarter of Game 4 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Boston Celtics, Sunday, Aug. 23, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

Kim Klement/Associated Press

Mike D’Antoni, Billy Donovan, and Ty Lue are among the top candidates for the Philadelphia 76ers’ head coaching vacancy, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania.

The Sixers parted ways with head coach Brett Brown in August after the Boston Celtics swept them in the first round of the playoffs. 

After D’Antoni decided not to return to Houston, the Philadelphia Inquirer‘s Keith Pompey reported the former Sixers associate head coach was “the candidate [Sixers ownership] wants.”

General manager Elton Brand is leading the coaching search, per Charania, which is good news for D’Antoni. Brand played for Philadelphia in 2015 under the duo of Brown and D’Antoni.

Lue, the lead assistant in Los Angeles under Doc Rivers this season, won an NBA title in 2016 in his first year as head coach in Cleveland. He followed it up with two Eastern Conference championships as he led the Cavaliers through three full seasons. He was fired after an 0-6 start to the 2018-19 season. 

Donovan, who finished third in voting for this season’s NBA Coach of the Year, made the playoffs in each of his five seasons with the Thunder, but he only advanced through the first round once. In 2019-20, he led the Thunder to a .611 winning percentage (44-28), his best since his first season in the league.

According to Charania, the Sixers are building their front office around Brand, who took over as Philadelphia’s general manager in September 2018.

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