Scott Brooks has agreed to a five-year deal worth $35 million to coach the Washington Wizards, according to league sources.
Brooks, the former coach of Oklahoma City, was fired by Thunder at the end of the 2014-15 season. While he was linked with several other teams, including the Los Angeles Lakers and Houston Rockets, Brooks sealed the deal with Wizards after a series of meetings this past week.
Over the last decade, Brooks has been one of the most successful coaches in the NBA. With a win/loss record of 338-207 with the Thunder, Brooks took the franchise to the 2012 NBA Finals besides five playoff appearances and few Conference Finals. According to ESPN Stats & Information, Brooks’ winning percentage of .620 is the best all-time mark among coaches never to capture a NBA championship. However, Brooks’ postseason record of 39-34 isn’t as impressive.
Scott Brooks leads to Kevin Durant?
Washington’s hire could be perceived as a way to lure hometown free agent superstar Kevin Durant, who enjoyed great success playing seven seasons under Brooks in Oklahoma City. However, a Yahoo Sports report claims that Durant to Wizards remains a long shot. “Washington will be pursuing D.C-area native Durant in free agency, but the Wizards remain a long shot in his recruitment, and Brooks’ hire isn’t expected to have a significant impact on Durant’s ultimate decision-making process.”
Earlier this year, ESPN’s Stephen A Smith, too, reported that Durant has effectively ruled out Washington as one of his shortlisted destinations this summer. However, ESPN’s Mark Stein reckons that Brooks was hired with the sole purpose of getting Durant. “He has been mentioned as a likely coaching target for the Wizards for months, given Washington’s well-chronicled intent to pursue D.C. native and current Thunder forward Kevin Durant in free agency this summer.”
Will Scott Brooks help Washington Wizards sign Durant? They have enough cap room to sign Durant and another marquee free agent. Would a team comprising of John Wall, Bradley Beal, Durant and another marquee free agent make the Wizards championship contenders next season?