LA Clippers assistant Chauncey Billups and San Antonio Spurs assistant Becky Hammon emerged among the top candidates and advanced to second interviews in the search for a Portland Trail Blazers head coach, sources told ESPN. .
Both attendees are scheduled for additional meetings with Portland officials in the coming days, the sources added.
Brooklyn Nets assistant Mike D’Antoni is another candidate still in the Blazers’ hunt.
Billups has been in contact with various teams in this search process and remains with the Clippers in their Western Conference finals series against the Phoenix Suns. This is Billups’ first season as an assistant coach in the NBA. He was a five-time NBA All-Star and was the MVP of the NBA Finals in 2004.
Hammon, who would become the first head coach in NBA history, has been on Gregg Popovich’s staff for seven seasons and has been interviewed for various jobs in recent years. She was a six-time WNBA All-Star in her professional playing career.
After a fourth first-round playoff elimination in five seasons, the Blazers and coach Terry Stotts parted ways after nine seasons together. Stotts left Portland as the second-winningest coach in franchise history, including eight straight playoff appearances, the longest streak in the league.
Portland’s season ended with a 4-2 series loss to the Denver Nuggets in the first round of the Western Conference playoffs.