The Blazers coach staff just lost one of the best assistant coaches in the NBA.
According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, the Minnesota Timberwolves have hired David Vanterpool as their associate head coach.
Sources: Minnesota is hiring Portland assistant David Vanterpool as associate head coach. He’ll run defense and play key role in support of Ryan Saunders. Vanterpool spent seven years with Blazers, playing a prominent part in growth of Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 6, 2019
Vanterpool has long been linked to head coaching vacancies around the league, and actually interviewed for three of those open jobs his offseason: The Phoenix Sun, Cleveland Cavaliers, and Minnesota Timberwolves.
All those teams eventually went in a different direction, but the Minnesota Timberwolves were impressed enough to offer him a key assistant role.
It was reported by Marc Stein of The New York Times early Wednesday that Vanterpool had interviewed to join Ryan Saunders' staff.
Veteran assistant coaches Chad Forcier (Memphis) and David Vanterpool (Portland) are among the candidates who have interviewed for spots on Ryan Saunders' coaching staff in Minnesota, according to league sources— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) June 5, 2019
Vanterpool joined the Trail Blazers as part of then-new head coach Terry Stotts' staff in 2012. In that time he has built great relationships with Portland's star backcourt duo of Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum and has been a key part of their development since they entered the league.
Coach Stotts, who just signed a contract extension, none has the unenviable task of finding someone to fill Vanterpool's shoes on his staff.