Sam Cassell is being mentioned as a possible candidate for the Boston Celtics’ head-coach job.
The 76ers assistant coach is familiar with the Celtics organization, playing in Boston during his final NBA season, 2007-08. Boston won the NBA title that season under current Sixers coach Doc Rivers.
The Celtics’ job opened up Wednesday, one day after they were eliminated by the Brooklyn Nets in the first round of the playoffs. Danny Ainge stepped down as president of basketball operations, and Brad Stevens left his head-coaching post to replace Ainge.
According to sources, Celtics assistants Jay Larranaga and Pooh Allen have interviewed for the job. Lloyd Pierce, a former Atlanta Hawks head coach and Sixers assistant, is among the leading candidates for the job.
But Cassell was publicly endorsed by ESPN analyst Kendrick Perkins, a former Celtics teammate, for the job.
“Brad Stevens, if you want to make your next move your best move,” he said, “you need to hire Sam Cassell.”
Cassell, who played 15 seasons, also won back-to-back titles with the Houston Rockets as a rookie in 1993-94 and second-year player in 1994-95.
Cassell got into coaching after winning the title with the Celtics. He joined the Washington Wizards’ coaching staff on May 21, 2009. While in Washington, Cassell was credited for developing John Wall into one of the league’s elite guards.
After five seasons with the Wizards, Cassell reunited with Rivers on the Los Angeles Clippers as an assistant. Then he followed Rivers to Philadelphia after the coach was hired in October.
Cassell has been instrumental in Ben Simmons’ development as a multifaceted standout.