Trail Blazers hire Clippers’ Chauncey Billups as head coach

Why Billups is suitable

Jovan Buha, defeated Lakers writer: Billups touched on the media aspect of the league and a management opportunity, but he always made the most sense as a coach. His decision to join his friend Tyronn Lue’s team this season was hardly surprising. Mr. Big Shot’s cool and calm demeanor is the type of leadership and communication style that appeals to the modern generation of gamers.

He also has cachet, with a championship and a finals MVP to his credit. Learning from Lue – a championship coach and one of the best tacticians in the game – this season makes him even more appealing as a contender, as the Blazers could use a boost in their plans.

What Billups brings to Portland

NBA Editor-in-Chief Sam Amick: Early on in the coaching research, sources said Billups was Olshey’s # 1 preference. And it’s not even close. From his championship days to his media career and that brief stint as an assistant coach for the Clippers, Billups brings the kind of profile Olshey clearly sees as an upgrade from the Stotts.

He is dynamic, respected and held in the highest regard by the best players today. The real question for the future, of course, is what Lillard thinks of this hire.

What is the next step for the other final applicants?

Amick: Brooklyn assistant Mike D’Antoni has been seen by sources as the next likely option behind Billups, with Spurs assistant Becky Hammon third. D’Antoni’s future will be fascinating to watch, as his pioneering (pun intended) experience as one of the offensive innovators of his time is unmistakable. But will he have another chance at this late stage of his career? We will see.

As for Hammon, she will likely continue to be widely viewed as one of the top candidates for leadership positions. Blazers president Jody Allen was known to be very interested in making history by hiring Hammon, but Billups won this particular coaching race.

(Photo: Chris Elise / NBAE via Getty Images)

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