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Thunder to Look at First-Time Head Coaches, Vanterpool Mentioned

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ESPN NBA Insider Brian Windhorst mentioned that former Trail Blazers assistant David Vanterpool has emerged as a candidate for the Thunder’s coaching vacancy.

Portland Trail Blazers v Sacramento Kings Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images

The Thunder, who parted ways with coach Billy Donovan after exiting the postseason, could be looking to a first-year head coach to fill the vacancy at the front of their bench. On Friday, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst mentioned that former Trail Blazers assistant and current Timberwolves assistant David Vanterpool as a potential candidate.

The Thunder are beginning to look at a rebuild, which is one of the reasons why Billy Donovan did not stay. The expectation is this could be a first-time head coach. Some of the names that I have heard: David Vanterpool, who is an assistant with the Timberwolves. Adrian Griffin, who has been a candidate for jobs over the years—recently with Toronto. And watch out for a sleeper candidate, Will Hardy—an assistant with the San Antonio Spurs.

Vanterpool, who formed a strong bond with Damian Lillard during his time in Portland, served on coach Terry Stotts’ staff from 2012 to 2019.