Mark Daigneault promoted to head coach of Thunder
The Oklahoma City Thunder are promoting from within to fill their head coaching vacancy, as former assistant Mark Daigneault will be named the team’s next head coach.
Daigneault has reached an agreement with the Thunder to replace former head coach Billy Donovan, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reports.
Daigneault, 35, has been with the Thunder for six years. He spent five seasons as the OKC Blue’s G-League coach, compiling a winning percentage of .572 and winning three division titles. He was an assistant under Donovan last season when the Thunder earned the No. 6 seed in the Western Conference playoffs.
Wojnarowski reports that Thunder general manager Sam Presti is excited over Daigneault’s proven track record with the organization and the connection he has made with players. Oklahoma City could have as many as 15 first-round picks in the next seven drafts, and they are trying to rebuild with a younger roster.
Now that the Thunder have hired a 35-year-old coach with no prior NBA head coaching experience, the next logical move may be to trade Chris Paul. Paul is set to earn $85 million over the next two seasons, and we know of at least one team that has expressed interest in acquiring him.