Raptors coach Nick Nurse away from team for personal reasons

Feb 12 2023, 4:46 pm

When the Toronto Raptors take the court on Sunday afternoon, they’ll be doing so without a familiar member of their group.

As per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, head coach Nick Nurse is away from the Raptors for their game against the Detroit Pistons due to personal reasons.

No further reason was given for his absence.

Toronto lead assistant Adrian Griffin will be taking Nurse’s place on Sunday as the team’s acting head coach.

Nurse had also missed Toronto’s practice on Saturday, less than 24 hours after coaching the team on Friday night in a loss against the Utah Jazz.

Toronto currently sits 26-31 on the season and 11th in the Eastern Conference.

In a season where the team had aspirations of finishing in the upper echelon of the league, the team’s sub-500 record has caused more criticism to be levied in the direction of the coaching staff and front office than in any of the previous seasons under the Nurse/Masai Ujiri/Bobby Webster era.

Nurse’s absence puts pause on one of the NBA’s great mini-rivalries: Nurse and his predecessor in Pistons coach Dwane Casey. Nurse served as an assistant under Casey from 2013-18, before the latter was fired and replaced by the former after the 2017-18 playoffs.

Casey was still awarded NBA Coach of the Year that same season, and took the Pistons job later that year.

Inexplicably, the Raptors are 4-9 against the Pistons since 2018-19, despite making the playoffs in three of four seasons while Detroit has only made the postseason once under Casey.

Tipoff for Sunday’s game is set for 3 pm.

Adam LaskarisAdam Laskaris

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