8:37am: Having dismissed head coach Igor Kokoskov on Monday, the Suns will start their search for a new coach by requesting permission to interview a pair of veteran assistants, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic (via Twitter). League sources tell Charania that Phoenix is eyeing Trail Blazers assistant David Vanterpool in addition to Sixers assistant Monty Williams.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski first reported the Suns’ interest in Williams shortly after Kokoskov’s dismissal on Monday. The former Pelicans head coach, who also served as an assistant in Portland and Oklahoma City, has emerged as one of the most popular targets this spring for teams in search of a head coach. The Lakers have interviewed him already, and the Kings were said to have him on their list before they hired Luke Walton.
As for Vanterpool, his name has been connected to multiple job openings in recent years, as he has long been viewed as one of the assistant coaches most prepared for a head coaching position. He reportedly met with the Magic and Hornets last spring, and the Cavaliers are expected to interview him after Portland’s playoff run ends.
I expect the Suns’ list of targets to continue to grow in the coming days, but the fact that Williams and Vanterpool have emerged as the first names on that list suggests that the club thinks highly of them.