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News / Sports / Blazers

Blazers finalize roster of assistant coaches

By Erik Gundersen, Columbian Trail Blazers Writer
Published: June 1, 2016, 10:45pm

The Portland Trail Blazers announced Wednesday afternoon that they have finalized Terry Stotts’ coaching staff for the 2016-17 season.

Jay Triano, who was the lead assistant and mostly focused on helping with the offense, left Portland to join Earl Watson’s staff in Phoenix a few days after the season ended.

They’ve replaced Triano by moving some assistants up a few seats and promoting advance scout John McCollugh to the coaching staff. McCollugh has been with the Blazers for four seasons as their advance scout.

According to a press release when McCollugh left Oklahoma Baptist University in 2012 to join the Blazers, he’s a close friend of Terry Stotts.

The two played together at the University of Oklahoma.

Outside of losing Triano and the addition of McCollugh, the staff is going to stay the same.

Nate Tibbetts, who interviewed for the Memphis Grizzlies opening and also reportedly interviewed with the Warriors for their lead assistant opening, is staying with the players through next season according to the team’s press release.

As part of the move, assistant coach Dale Osbourne has been promoted to the front of the bench.

Osbourne is a hard worker with a warm personality who has shown an ability to connect with players.

David Vanterpool, known for his work with Portland’s guards and specifically Damian Lillard, will return for his fifth season with the team.

Vanterpool and Osbourne are the only two holdovers from Stotts’ first coaching staff back in the 2012-13 season.

Keeping coaching staffs together is a rare feat and the Blazers have transitioned from year to year with minimal changes.

Jim Moran, who was added to the coaching staff last year to help coach the big men and replaced Kim Hughes, will also be back with the Blazers next season.

Columbian Trail Blazers Writer