The once-strong relationship between former Toronto Raptors head coach Dwane Casey and his replacement, Nick Nurse, has reportedly soured over the course of the team’s coaching change this past month.
According to Toronto Star columnist Dave Feschuk, the two “have not been on affable terms in the midst of Toronto’s coaching-staff shakeup” and that, as per a Feschuk source, there’s “no love lost between ’em.”
Casey was hired to be the Detroit Pistons’ head coach on Monday, just one day prior to Nurse being promoted in Toronto.
Their relationship — Casey served as a sort of mentor to Nurse after plucking him from the developmental league to be an assistant coach with the Raptors back in 2013 — may have begun to fray during the Raptors’ recent playoff run. Their dismal second-round sweeping at the hands of LeBron James’ Cleveland Cavaliers exposed Toronto’s struggles on defence and, according to Feschuk, “Nurse’s offence-forward suggestions were never fully heard nor understood.”
The defensive-minded Casey and Nurse, who is largely credited for the Raptors’ top offence in 2017-18, took the club to five straight playoff appearances from 2013-14 to 2017-18 before Masai Ujiri opted to make the coaching change.