After nine seasons, the Portland Trail Blazers decided that it was time for a new head coach.
Terry Stotts was the man during this time and led the franchise to some success.
They made the playoffs for eight straight seasons and made the Western Conference Finals once.
However, the Trail Blazers believed it was time to move on and head in a new direction.
It is time to begin a new era and get Damian Lillard a taste of the NBA Finals.
Their decision was to hire first-time NBA head coach, Chauncey Billups.
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) June 26, 2021
We remember Billups from his playing days, mostly with the Detroit Pistons.
He was known for his clutch shot making at the point guard spot and even won Finals MVP in 2004.
The man will most likely be in the Hall of Fame one day.
That is not what we want to discuss.
Instead, let’s touch on why he is a bad fit with the Trail Blazers as their new head coach.
Lack of Experience
This will be Billups’ first time as a head coach.
He has only been an assistant for two years now as well.
This does not mean he is doomed to fail.
Steve Kerr came in as a new head coach and won a title.
Ty Lue stepped in midway through the season to guide the Cleveland Cavaliers.
However, we have seen failures as well.
Jason Kidd was a very up-and-down head coach that burned bridges in two places.
Derek Fisher was awful during his time with the New York Knicks.
It is hard to see Billups being in the Kerr and Lue category.
Kerr was around in the front office for several years, while Lue was an assistant on multiple teams up to that point.
Billups has been in the coaching realm for only a year.
Maybe he is ready to take the chance at being a head coach, but it is fair to be skeptical.
1997 Incident And The Backlash
Billups was never found guilty on this charge.
However, there is backlash that has come from it and him being hired.
Billups has allegations stemming from 1997 about a potential sexual assault that took place.
He was never charged, but settled a civil lawsuit from the incident.
Granted, that was over two decades ago, but it is still important.
He is now in charge of one of the 30 positions around the league.
Only a select few have this opportunity.
The allegations are scary.
Of course the hiring will receive backlash.
The issue is that the Trail Blazers are doing a bad job of handling it.
New Trail Blazers head coach Chauncey Billups was asked by The Athletic’s @jwquick how the 1997 incident helped shape him.
Blazers PR responded:
— The Athletic (@TheAthletic) June 29, 2021
An awkward press conference is bad enough.
Now Lillard potentially wants to leave over the hiring.
Lillard did not know about these allegations until after Billups was hired.
He has an issue with how this was brought to his attention and that the Trail Blazers decided to go with Billups anyway.
Before even stepping on the sideline, there is tension with Billups from the franchise player, to the fanbase.