Raps pick up option on coach
By SPORTS NETWORK
|Raps head coach Dwane Casey speaks about the improvements the team made defensively this year at the conclusion of the NBA season on Friday, April 27, 2012. (Jack Boland/QMI Agency)
TORONTO - The Toronto Raptors have picked up the option on the contract of head coach Dwane Casey, extending his deal through the 2013-14 season.
The Raptors finished Casey's first season at 23-43, fourth in the Atlantic Division and one game ahead of last-place New Jersey. Toronto won more games in the just-completed shortened season than in the full regular-season campaign of 2010-11 (22-60).
"Dwane did a terrific job this year of adhering to our plan of growth and development for this young team," said Raptors general manager Bryan Colangelo in a statement Friday. "We set out to change the culture and improve defensively, and he orchestrated both progressions in an impressive fashion."
The Raptors finished among the top-10 in points allowed, opponent field-goal percentage and three-point field goal percentage this season after ranking in the bottom third of all three categories in 2010-11.
Casey, known for his defensive schemes, joined the Raptors after three seasons as an assistant with Dallas. The Mavericks won the NBA title in his final year with the club.
He also was an assistant with the Seattle SuperSonics from 1994-2005, then spent a year and a half as head coach of the Minnesota Timberwolves. Casey's brief tenure in Minnesota included a record of 33-49 during the 2005-06 season -- his only full year on the job. He was fired after a 20-20 start the following year.