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Ranking the reported possible coaching candidates for Sixers’ vacancy

The Philadelphia 76ers are looking for a new head man after firing Doc Rivers on Tuesday. Rivers held the job for three seasons and led the Sixers to a great deal of success, but three consecutive eliminations in the conference semifinals did him in.

The Sixers face what should be a lengthy coaching search. They must decide which coach is the best option to help Joel Embiid and, possibly, James Harden take the next step in the playoffs.

Per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, quite a few candidates will be considered for the position. Assistant Sam Cassell is among them, and the following is a ranking of the six names that have been reported for the job:

1. Nick Nurse

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Nurse is a brilliant tactician who gets the most out of his rosters. The schemes he comes up with are innovative and his work while with the Toronto Raptors was impressive. Most will turn to Kawhi Leonard for the title run in 2019, but the job he did the following season in the bubble has gone unnoticed as well as his work the previous two seasons. He has ties to Daryl Morey from their time together with the Houston Rockets. He should be at the top of the list for this coaching search.

2. Monty Williams

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A close second to Nurse in this ranking is Williams. He has a great offensive mind, and he helped turn the Suns into a contender starting in the 2019-20 season and the run in the bubble. He ended up falling short in the 2021 finals, but if Williams were to be hired, he bring a no-nonsense style to Philadelphia and a terrific offensive scheme that should fit Embiid and Harden.

3. Mike D'Antoni

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One can hear the collective groans from everybody reading this, but D’Antoni makes a lot of sense as long as Harden is on the roster. The two already have a great relationship. D’Antoni runs an up-tempo offensive style suited to Harden, and the familiarity will help Philadelphia’s bid to keep The Beard in tow. If they hire D’Antoni, it will be interesting to see how Embiid fits into the style, but D’Antoni also coached Shaquille O’Neal while with the Phoenix Suns.

4. Sam Cassell

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A majority of the fan base in Philadelphia would love to see Cassell hired. He has done wonders for Tyrese Maxey and Harden, and he has a great relationship with both. There is no doubt he is ready to become a head coach in this league, but to put the championship hopes in the hands of a guy who has no head coaching experience is risky. On the flip side, the Raptors handed the reigns to Nurse, and he did well.

5. Mike Budenholzer

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Budenholzer will have to prove himself again. After leading the Bucks to the No. 1 seed in the East, they were bounced by the No. 8 seed Miami Heat. They blew a double-digit lead in the fourth quarter in both Games 4 and 5. Coach Bud is a terrific coach who has a title under his belt from 2021. If the Sixers go this route, it wouldn’t be a bad hire by any means.

6. Frank Vogel

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Vogel, a Wildwood, New Jersey, native, also has a championship on his resume from 2020 with the Los Angeles Lakers. He has done many good things during his coaching career with the Indiana Pacers, Orlando Magic and Lakers. There are some good things he’d be able to do with this roster, but he is likely the last candidate mentioned to be considered for the job.

Story originally appeared on Sixers Wire