Toronto Raptors Fire Coach Dwane Casey

Dwane Casey. Photo by Canadian Press/REX/Shutterstock (5613421i)

Toronto Raptors announced on Friday that they have fired their head coach Dwane Casey. This decision came after an early playoff exit handed to them by LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers on Tuesday. Casey had one year left on his $6.5 million worth contract.

After careful consideration, I have decided this is a very difficult but necessary step the franchise must take,” – said Raptors president Masai Ujiri in a statement. “As a team, we are constantly trying to grow and improve in order to get to the next level. We celebrate everything Dwane has done for the organization, we thank him, and we wish him nothing but the best in the future. He was instrumental in creating the identity and culture of who we are as a team, and we are so proud of that.

Dwane Casey left the Toronto Raptors as the most successful coach in franchise’s history. He took over the Raptors in 2011 and improved the team’s record in six of the seven seasons. He also led them to the playoffs in each of the last five seasons.

The 2017-18 regular season was particularly successful for Dwane Casey since he coached the Raptors to number one seed in the Eastern Conference and 59 wins, which represent the franchise’s record. Still, Casey couldn’t translate regular season success to the playoffs, being eliminated by the Cleveland Cavaliers in the past three seasons.

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Toronto Raptors are considering former Atlanta Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer, Raptors assistant Nick Nurse and G League coach Jerry Stackhouse for the vacant head coach position.

Dwane Casey, on the other side, has immediately become a favorite for number of head coaching jobs in the NBA including Detroit Pistons and Milwaukee Bucks.