When Brad Stevens transitioned into the role of team president, the Boston Celtics interviewed a number of internal candidates to replace him on the sidelines, including assistant Scott Morrison. In the end, though, the team tapped Ime Udoka to become its new head coach and Morrison wasn’t retained for his new staff.
It didn’t take long for the Canadian transplant to find his next job, however.
Per an announcement from the NBL’s Perth Wildcats on Monday, Morrison just signed a deal to become the team’s head coach for the next three years.
Morrison had been on the Celtics’ bench dating back to the 2017-18 season, but his involvement with the organization goes back even farther. He had previously served as head coach for Boston’s G League affiliate, the then-Maine Red Claws.
During his time as the developmental squad’s bench maestro, he worked with players like Dwight Powell, Terry Rozier, Abdel Nader and current Cs guard Marcus Smart. At the time of his promotion, he had become the winningest coach in Maine’s history with a 95-55 record and captured a G League Coach of the Year award.
Wildcats Brass on the Morrison Hire
While Morrison’s name likely isn’t well-known to hoops casuals, Wildcats general manager Danny Mills was more than familiar with the 43-year-old even before this hiring process.
“I first met Scott eight years ago when he was an unpaid intern for the Maine Red Claws and have stayed in touch with him while watching his career trajectory take off,” said Mills. “To take the steps he has with a historic franchise like Boston has been very impressive.”
Mills said that Morrison’s diverse basketball background made him a “standout candidate” for the Wildcats’ head coaching job.
“He brings a well-rounded mix of player development as well as offensive and defensive philosophy that resonates with the NBL, given his FIBA background in Canada working with their national teams, both junior and senior,” he added. “That stood out to us.”
Wildcats CEO Troy Georgiu was similarly bullish on the hire.
“Scott came with numerous recommendations from many well-respected people within the NBA,” he said. “He impressed us with both his coaching history and how he presented. I’m confident we’ve picked the right person for the job and look forward to welcoming he and his young family to Perth.”
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Morrison Is Joining an Aussie Hoops Dynasty
Although the Wildcats had been on the hunt for a new head coach, their vacancy had nothing to do with any shortfall on the franchise’s part. Perth’s previous coach, Trevor Gleeson, had simply requested his release in order to pursue NBA opportunities and was quickly locked up by the Toronto Raptors.
Perth is arguably the Celtics of the NBL, having appeared in 16 Grand Finals and winning 10 league championships, with the most recent title coming in 2020.
The team has been led on the court for the past five seasons by former Providence star and one-time NBA guard Bryce Cotton, who has led the NBL in scoring four times and captured MVP honors in 2018, 2020 and 2021.
Last season, Cotton and the Wildcats finished with a 25-11 regular-season record and advanced to the Grand Final. However, they fell short in their title bid against Melbourne United.