As the Trail Blazers continue their search for their next head coach, it will be without a candidate initially reported as a favorite to land the job.
On Sunday, Lakers assistant Jason Kidd withdrew his name from consideration.
"Portland's a first-class organization and will have great candidates for its head coaching job, but I've decided not to be one of them," Kidd told ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. "Whoever they choose will have big shoes to fill from Terry [Stotts]."
Woj added in his report that Kidd was uncomfortable with the idea of pursuing the Blazers head coaching vacancy after Blazers point guard Damian Lillard told Chris Haynes of Yahoo! Sports that “Jason Kidd is the guy I want.”
"The public nature of Lillard's endorsement left Kidd feeling he would put both Lillard and Portland's process in an awkward circumstance should he pursue the opening," Woj wrote.
Kidd has been Frank Vogel's top assistant with the Lakers for the past two seasons, which includes LA's 2020 NBA championship.
Before joining the Lakers, the NBA Hall of Famer had served as the head coach for Brooklyn (2013-14) and Milwaukee (2014-2018). He was fired after 3.5 seasons as the Bucks head coach.
After his report went viral, Haynes followed up his story, saying while it is Lillard's preference to have Kidd, "ultimately it will be the front office that makes the final call on who is the franchise’s next head coach.”
Now, Clippers assistant Chauncey Billups becomes the leader in the clubhouse. Jeff Van Gundy, Mike D'Antoni and Michigan head coach Juwan Howard are all expected to be considered, as well.
The Blazers will reportedly interview Celtics assistant Jerome Allen for head coaching vacancy, as well.
Former Blazers forward LaMarcus Aldridge publicly endorsed Kaleb Canales & Ime Udoka as Blazers head coach.
To date, the Blazers have yet to ask for permission to speak to any potential candidates, according to Woj.
That is expected to change once the first round of the playoffs ends, however.
Portland will not rush to any decision, nor should they. With Lillard still in his prime, this is arguably one of the most important coaching hires in team history.