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As first-year head coach Chauncey Billups fills out his Blazers coaching staff, he has to meticulously put together a group he thinks can work as a team. In doing so he also needed to select someone to be his No. 2.
Through that search, names like Lionel Hollins and Vinny Del Negro surfaced. While all are respectable coaches, it was something about former Wizards head coach Scott Brooks that intrigued Billups.
Brooks joins Portland after five seasons in Washington, which included the team being on the brink of the Eastern Conference Finals in 2017 to the team playing just about two seasons without John Wall.
Brooks dealt with the team he had, and more often than not there were key injuries or health and safety protocol issues.
Either way, he has a new opportunity to help a former All-Star. On Monday's episode the The Bridge, NBC Sports Washington’s Chris Miller is very optimistic about the value Brooks will bring to Rip City.
“I think it's important for first-year head coach Chauncey Billups to have his lead assistant be someone who has gone through the fire of being a head coach,” Miller said. “It’s a lonely seat. Everyone wants that seat. It’s really lonely when you get there because everyone’s poking and prodding and criticizing and critiquing everything that you do.”
Brooks is as experienced as a coach can be. He played in the NBA for 13 seasons and has been coaching for over 20 years. From coaching the likes of James Harden, Kevin Durant, John Wall, and Bradley Beal to now Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum. Whether it’s coaching a team that can win a championship or a team bound for the lottery. He’s been there and done that.
“I think for Chauncey, for having Scotty, who’s a really good dude and a good person,” Miller said “He understands his role… I think sitting in that second seat with Chauncey will really be beneficial for him.”
Coaching is a multi-layered job, which includes communicating. Miller praises Brooks for his ability to do that and thinks that skill is invaluable to Billups’ staff and the roster.
“Scotty is a really good communicator,” he said. “I think this opportunity to talk to players and communicate with them will be really good for him.”