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Quick: Blazers Down To 4 Coaching Finalists

Jason Quick of The Oregonian reports on Twitter that the Portland Trail Blazers have narrowed their list of candidates for their head coaching position to four names. --------------------------- The Oregonian has learned the Blazers Final Four coaching candidates: Terry Stotts, Elston Turner, Steve Clifford and Kaleb Canales --------------------------- Stotts, 54, was a head coach for the Atlanta Hawks from 2002-2004 and the Milwaukee Bucks from 2005-2007. He holds a career coaching record of 115-168. He made the playoffs with the Bucks in 2006 but Milwaukee was eliminated in the first round in five games. A member of the George Karl coaching tree, Stotts is currently an assistant coach for the Dallas Mavericks and previously served as an assistant coach for the Bucks, Hawks, Seattle SuperSonics, and Golden State Warriors. Here's his NBA.com biography. John Canzano of The Oregonian recently had a piece on Stotts, which included a strong endorsement from Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle. -------------------------- "Of all the coaches presently in play, Terry is by far the best available," Carlisle said. "He's a professional and understands the process of NBA coaching and how to communicate and teach young players." -------------------------- Turner, 53, is a former NBA player and has spent 14 seasons as an assistant coach with the Blazers, Sacramento Kings, Houston Rockets and the Phoenix Suns. He joined the Suns staff is 2011-12. Here's his NBA.com biography. He was an assistant in Portland from 1996-2000. Clifford is a long-time scout and coach at the college level and in the NBA. He has spent the last five seasons as an assistant coach with the Orlando Magic. K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune reported a few weeks ago that Clifford was headed to the Bulls as an assistant. Here's his NBA.com biography. Canales, 34, has worked his way up in the Blazers from video intern. He has spent the last seven years in Portland and was promoted to assistant coach in 2009. When former Blazers coach Nate McMillan was fired back in March, Canales assumed interim coach duties. He posted an 8-15 mark down the stretch. When he was hired back in June, new Blazers GM Neil Olshey called Canales the "in-house favorite" for the full-time job. Last week, I wrote about how Canales is starting to open up a little bit. The finalists emerge after a lengthy interview process. -- Ben Golliver | benjamin.golliver@gmail.com | Twitter
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