Billy Donovan, Maurice Cheeks looking at a phone

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Report: Milwaukee Bucks expected to ‘explore’ trading for Chris Paul



After coaching Paul Pierce, Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett to a championship in 2008 and coming within one game of another title in 2010, Doc Rivers decided he didn’t have the stomach for a full-blown rebuild in Boston.

He sat down with Danny Ainge and the two decided to part ways. It sounds as though something similar happened with Billy Donovan.

On Tuesday night, Sam Presti announced that Donovan — whose contract expired at the end of the season — would not be returning to coach the team next season. According to the general manager, it seems that Donovan had reservations about the rebuilding situation that appears to be on the horizon.

Almost immediately, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski — who broke the story of Donovan’s departure — reported that the Bulls are “expected to have an interest in considering” the former Thunder head coach for their opening.

Although the Knicks and Nets have each filled their head coaching vacancies, along with the Bulls, the Sixers and Pacers are each looking for new head coaches. There could be some additional vacancies, as well.

Chicago fired head coach Jim Boylen after he assumed the helm for the club last season. The franchise has missed the playoffs four out of the last five years and is currently looking for a coach that could connect with its young nucleus consisting of Zach LaVine, Coby White, Lauri Markkanen and Otto Porter.

Although he is not being brought back to Oklahoma City, Donovan can depart with his head high. After five years, he compiled a won-loss record of 243-157. His playoff record of 18-23 was less-than-stellar, but his leading the club to the postseason this past season was considered a major accomplishment. He was voted the co-Coach of the Year by the NBA’s head coaches and finished third for the NBA’s Coach of the Year Award.

Donovan is expected to be interested in remaining in the NBA, so the situations in Chicago, Philadelphia and Indianapolis are all worth watching.


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