RAPTORS SIGN NURSE TO CONTRACT EXTENSION
The Toronto Raptors announced Tuesday they have signed head coach Nick Nurse to a multi-year contract extension. Per team policy, financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. This past season, Nurse guided the Raptors to a 53-19 record during the regular season (second best in the NBA) and set a franchise-record with a .736 winning percentage. Toronto also reached the Eastern Conference Semifinals for the fifth straight year.
“Our confidence in Nick just continues to grow, and part of that comes from what we’ve experienced together. The past two seasons have been unlike any other in our team’s history – first, winning our championship, and then navigating a global pandemic and committing long-term to the fight against racism and for social justice,” Raptors president Masai Ujiri said. “Nick has proved that he can coach on the court and lead in life, and we’re looking forward to accomplishing great things in the future.”
In his two seasons at the helm of the Raptors, Nurse has posted a 111-43 record (.721) during the regular season. In the playoffs, he has compiled a 23-12 mark (.657), while leading Toronto to its first NBA Championship in 2019. Nurse has earned Eastern Conference Coach of the Month honours three times (Jan. 2020, Oct./Nov. 2019, Nov. 2018) and coached Team Giannis at the 2020 NBA All-Star Game in Chicago.
“My family and I will always be appreciative of Larry Tanenbaum and MLSE ownership for this opportunity. I’m grateful to Masai, Bobby, and the players for their trust and their hard work,” Nurse said. “Toronto has been my home for the past seven years, and I look forward to it being home for many more. I’ve watched this franchise grow and reach the pinnacle, and I look forward to the challenge of helping us win another championship.”
Nurse was named the 2019-20 NBA Coach of the Year, becoming the first coach to be selected as Coach of the Year in both the NBA and the NBA G League. Highlighting Toronto’s season last year was a franchise-record 15 straight victories (Jan. 15 – Feb. 10). The winning streak was the longest in Canadian sports history (NBA, NHL, MLB, MLS and CFL).
In 2018-19, the Raptors won 58 regular season games and set franchise records for points per game (114.4), assists per game (25.4), rebounds per game (45.2), and three-point field goals made (1,105). The team went 16-8 in the postseason, defeating Orlando, Philadelphia, Milwaukee and Golden State en route to the Raptors’ first NBA title.
A graduate of the University of Northern Iowa, Nurse was named the ninth head coach in Raptors history on June 14, 2018, taking the job after five years as an assistant coach with the team.
Nurse came to the NBA after several successful years in the NBA G League – where he was the only coach to lead two different teams to the league championship – Rio Grande Valley in 2013 and Iowa in 2011. For his accomplishments with the Energy, Nurse was named the 2010-11 recipient of the Dennis Johnson Coach of the Year award.