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Three Coaching Candidates For the Philadelphia 76ers

Publish Date:May 26, 2023
Fact checked by: Chris A

Three Coaching Candidates For the Philadelphia 76ers

The Philadelphia 76ers have put an end to the Doc Rivers era after the team took a very rough series loss to the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. This was a very disappointing way to end the season after Joel Embiid was named the league’s MVP. Along with Rivers being on his way out of Philadelphia, there is a chance that James Harden could also be joining a new team.

This puts the 76ers in a very interesting spot with a chance to completely reconstruct their team around Embiid. There are three coaches that they should take a look at to fill their head coaching vacancy.

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1. Mike D’Antoni

If James Harden remains on the team, their best option to replace Doc Rivers very well could be Mike D’Antoni. While Harden was extremely streaky as a shooter and passive as a scorer on the offensive end at times throughout the season, D’Antoni would be the most likely coach to be able to get him back in a groove. It is clear that Embiid needs a second option to help carry the offense, and at times when Tyrese Maxey stepped up to the plate it still was not enough.

If Harden is still a member of the 76ers coming into the 2023-24 season, he has to step up on offense when it matters most. When Harden was playing the best basketball of his career, D’Antoni was his head coach. While a fair amount of time has passed since then, there is a strong chance that the two would be able to pick up right where they left off. If Harden can be a consistent threat on the offensive end, the 76ers would immediately be one of the most difficult teams to beat in the league.

2. Sam Cassell

Sam Cassell is currently an assistant coach on the 76ers coaching staff. He already has a very close relationship with the players and knows their strengths and weaknesses potentially better than anyone else that Philadelphia is interviewing for the head coaching vacancy. Along with this, Cassell spent a considerable amount of time in the league. Oftentimes, former players are much more liked by the players they coach and have a much more laid-back coaching style.

With there being so much pressure on the shoulders of players like Embiid and Harden coming into the 2023-24 season, going with Cassell could be a great option to help keep the stars levelheaded in big moments like the postseason.

3. Mike Budenholzer

The final coach that the 76ers should take a look at is Mike Budenholzer. During his time as the head coach of the Milwaukee Bucks, they were one of the top defensive teams in the league. With an incredible weapon on the defensive side of the ball in Embiid, this could be a very interesting pairing.

While this would likely not be the best decision if the team holds onto Harden, if they are able to rebuild the team a bit and better suit it to complement Embiid, Budenholzer could be an incredible option. He just like the 76ers has a lot to prove after the 2022-23 postseason, and all parties will be extremely hungry to bring a championship to Philadelphia.

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