After being mentioned as a frontrunner for the Portland Trail Blazers head coaching vacancy, it appears Chauncey Billups will soon be named Terry Stotts’ successor.
Shams Charania of The Athletic reported Friday night that the Blazers are hiring the Clippers assistant as their head coach. ESPN’s Adrian Wojanorowski says the Blazers are in talks to hire Billups with contract negotiations expected to continue through the weekend.
NBCSNW’s Dwight Jaynes confirmed that Billups has verbally accepted the job, but the contract has not yet been negotiated. That will be done this weekend.
With Billups expected to be officially named the Blazers head coach in the coming days, NBA Twitter reacted to the news.
But Billups’ reported hire wasn’t well-received by everyone. Many criticized Portland and its star Damian Lillard who advocated for the hiring of Billups as well as newly-hired Mavericks coach Jason Kidd.
When Billups was a rookie with the Celtics in 1997, a woman accused him and Ron Mercer of rape at the home of Antoine Walker. Billups and Mercer settled the suit with the unidentified woman, paying her an undisclosed amount out of court.
One of those tweets in particular caught the eye of Lillard, who responded that he didn’t even know about Billups’ allegations in the 90s at the time.
Nonetheless, It appears Billups is the Blazers guy. The 17-year NBA veteran is well-respected around the league and brings elite point guard production to Portland.
Here's a breakdown of Billups' top accolades and other NBA career notes:
- NBA Champion with the Pistons in 2004
- NBA Finals MVP in 2004
- Five-time NBA All-Star (2006-2010)
- Two-time NBA All-Defensive Second Team in 2005 and 2006
- All-NBA Second-Team in 2006
- Two-time All-NBA Third Team in 2007 and 2009
- Earned the NBA Sportsmanship Award in 2009
- Was NBA Teammate of the Year in 2013
- Billups played in 1,043 career games averaging 15.2 points, 5.4 assists, 2.9 rebounds, and 1.0 steals per game
- Earned the nickname "Mr. Big Shot" for his late-game heroics