Nick Nurse

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Nick Nurse
Toronto Raptors
Position Head coach
League NBA
Personal information
Born (1967-07-24) July 24, 1967 (age 51)
Carroll, Iowa
Nationality American
Career information
College Northern Iowa (1985–1989)
Coaching career 1989–present
Career history
As coach:
1989–1990 Northern Iowa (assistant)
1990–1991 Derby Storm (player-coach)
1991–1993 Grand View
1993–1995 South Dakota (assistant)
1995–1997 Birmingham Bullets
1998 Telindus Oostende
1998–2000 Manchester Giants
2000–2001 London Towers
2001 Oklahoma Storm (assistant)
2001–2006 Brighton Bears
2005 Oklahoma Storm (assistant)
2007–2011 Iowa Energy
2011–2013 Rio Grande Valley Vipers
20132018 Toronto Raptors (assistant)
2018–present Toronto Raptors
Career highlights and awards

As coach:

Nick Nurse (born July 24, 1967) is an American basketball coach. He is the current head coach of the Toronto Raptors of the National Basketball Association (NBA).

Coaching career[edit]

Early years[edit]

Nurse got his first head coaching job at Grand View University when he was only 23 years old; at the time, he was the youngest college basketball head coach in the country. [1]

Nurse later spent 11 seasons coaching in Europe, mostly in the British Basketball League (BBL).[1] He won the BBL Coach of the Year Award in 1999–00 and 2003–04.[2]


In 2007, Nurse accepted the head coaching job for the Iowa Energy, who were preparing for their first season in the NBA D-League (now called the NBA G League).[3] The Energy won division titles under Nurse in the 2008–09 and 2009–10 seasons. After three seasons with the team, Nurse agreed to join the coaching staff of the Iowa State Cyclones as an associate head coach in April 2010.[2] Shortly afterward, however, Cyclones head coach Greg McDermott left Iowa State to become the head coach at Creighton, and Nurse returned to his former position as head coach with the Energy.[4][5] In the 2010–11 NBA D-League season, Nurse received the Dennis Johnson Coach of the Year Award after helping Iowa achieve the best record in the league (37–13).[6] Nurse and the Energy then went on to win the 2011 D-League championship.[7] Before the 2011–12 season, Nurse left the Energy for the D-League's Rio Grande Valley Vipers.[8][9] In the 2012–13 season, the Vipers finished with a record of 35–15 and won the D-League finals in a two-game sweep of the Santa Cruz Warriors.[10]

During his six seasons coaching in the D-League, Nurse had 23 players on his rosters called up to the NBA.[11]


In July 2013, Nurse departed the Vipers for an assistant job on the coaching staff of the Toronto Raptors under Dwane Casey.[12] He was in charge of the offense during his time under Casey,[11][13] and in the 2017-18 season he was credited for changes to the Raptors offensive game plan which included increases in passing and 3-point attempts.[14][15][16] The improved offense helped the Raptors win a franchise-record 59 games, but the team was swept in the second round of the 2018 NBA Playoffs by LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers, and Casey was fired shortly thereafter.[17]

On June 14, 2018, the Raptors promoted Nurse to the position of head coach to succeed Casey.[18]


  1. ^ a b "Raptors 2015 Preseason Media Guide" (PDF). Retrieved 17 June 2018.
  2. ^ a b Garman, Andy (April 22, 2010). "Energy Coach Nurse Takes ISU Assistant Job". KCCI. Archived from the original on March 7, 2012. Retrieved July 26, 2010.
  3. ^ "D-League Des Moines Team Announces All-Iowa Coaching Staff". NBA Development League. March 27, 2007. Archived from the original on November 4, 2011. Retrieved July 26, 2010.
  4. ^ "Iowa State, Nurse reach settlement". USA Today. Associated Press. July 8, 2010. Retrieved July 26, 2010.
  5. ^ Peterson, Randy. "Peterson: Toronto Raptors coach Nick Nurse is the ultimate basketball grinder — and it all started in small-town Iowa". Des Moines Register. Retrieved 17 June 2018.
  6. ^ "Nick Nurse Named D-League Coach Of The Year – RealGM Wiretap".
  7. ^ Schroeder, Scott. "Iowa Energy Win D-League Championship Over RGV Vipers". Ridiculous Upside. Retrieved 17 June 2018.
  8. ^ "NBA Development League: Q&A: New Rio Grande Valley Head Coach Nick Nurse". Retrieved November 20, 2011.
  9. ^ "NBA Development League: Reigning Coach of the Year Joins Vipers". Retrieved November 20, 2011.
  10. ^ Silva II, Dennis. "RGV Capsules: Vipers notch second title in four years". Brownsville Herald. Retrieved 17 June 2018.
  11. ^ a b Hinojosa, David. "Source: Vipers' Nick Nurse headed to Toronto". The Monitor. Retrieved 17 June 2018.
  12. ^ Lebron, Steven. "The long, strange journey of a Raptors' assistant -". Retrieved 17 June 2018.
  13. ^ Stein, Marc. "Toronto Raptors to Promote Assistant Nick Nurse to Head Coach". Retrieved 17 June 2018.
  14. ^ Harrison, Ian. "Toronto Raptors officially hire Nick Nurse as coach |". Retrieved 17 June 2018.
  15. ^ "Report: Nick Nurse agrees to deal, becomes Toronto Raptors' new coach |". Retrieved 17 June 2018.
  16. ^ Wolstat, Ryan (13 June 2018). "Raptors promote assistant coach Nick Nurse to replace Casey". Toronto Sun. Retrieved 17 June 2018.
  17. ^ Stein, Marc. "Raptors Fire Dwane Casey Days After He Wins Coaching Honor". Retrieved 17 June 2018.
  18. ^ "Raptors Name Nick Nurse Head Coach". June 14, 2018. Retrieved June 14, 2018.

External links[edit]