Earl Watson, who played for the Blazers in the 2013-14 campaign, coached the Suns in the 2016-17 season and for a snippet of the following season, but was fired three games into the year.
The reasoning behind his untimely dismissal was part of the league’s investigation.
The NBA’s investigation into Suns owner Robert Sarver found that he threatened to fire Earl Watson if the coach wouldn’t leave his agency, Klutch Sports.
- Watson stayed with Klutch & was fired “shortly thereafter” — 3 games into 2017-18 season.
The investigation included 320 interviews and more than 80,000 documents that found Sarver to use racial derogatory slurs, inappropriate comments towards female employees, physical conduct towards male employees and harsh treatment.
As a result of the investigation, the NBA is suspending Sarver for the entire 2022-23 season and fining him $10 million.