Toronto finds new leader, hires Ryakovich as head coach

“According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Toronto is hiring head coach Darko Rajakovic.

The Raptors had been in internal discussions with Sergio Scariolo (Toronto) and Kenny Atkinson (Golden State), among others, until recently. 안전놀이터 After much deliberation, Toronto settled on the former Memphis Grizzlies coach as its next head coach.

Rajakovic has been a favorite to become Toronto’s next head coach all summer. With so many head coaches being fired this summer, he didn’t get a lot of attention. However, after a deliberate search centered on current coaches rather than former coaches, the Rapids ultimately settled on Rakovic.

Rayakovic is a native of Serbia and has been coaching since 1996. He stayed in Europe for a long time, starting with youth teams. He crossed the Atlantic in 2012. He began his coaching career in the United States in the 2012-2013 season as head coach of the Tulsa Sixtysixers (now Oklahoma City Blue).

He then spent five seasons in Oklahoma City, starting with the 2014-2015 season, working closely with Billy Donovan (formerly of Chicago). He then spent a season with the Phoenix Suns and assisted head coach Taylor Jenkins in Memphis for three seasons, from the 2020-2021 season to this season. In addition to his extensive player-coaching experience, he is an experienced coach, having spent nine seasons as a head coach in the NBA.

During his time in Memphis, he played a significant role in the development of young players. This summer, he emerged as a candidate for the Toronto head coaching job, eventually beating out other candidates for the job. He’s still in his early 40s and has been through the youth ranks, the G-League, and the NBA, making him the perfect fit for a rebuilding Toronto organization.

“ESPN’s Kevin Anowitz seriously considered him a candidate for the next head coach last year. He described him as a “scholarly type of coach who builds tactics, including pick-and-rolls,” saying he could be the next head coach despite the lack of success of other European coaches in the NBA.

Meanwhile, he coached the Serbian national team at the 2019 Basketball World Cup. Prior to his appointment, he assisted Alexander Jorjevic (head coach of China) at the last World Cup. Serbia was considered a favorite to win the tournament, but finished fifth in the last edition.

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