Sergio Scariolo is prepared to serve as acting head coach of the Raptors for as long as necessary, writes Doug Smith of The Toronto Star. Scariolo got his new responsibilities Friday when Nick Nurse and five members of his staff were placed in health and safety protocols. The team responded with a victory over the Rockets.
The win capped a hectic week for Scariolo, who was in Poland last weekend with the Spanish national team for a pair of FIBA EuroBasket qualification games. He flew to Florida on Monday and entered quarantine, as required by league guidelines. Thursday afternoon marked the first rumors that Nurse and most of the coaching staff wouldn’t be available for Friday’s game.
“We are learning that we have tools and capacity to react to really weird situations, to emergency situations … like this, or I imagine a hundred more that happen all over the world to every person, to every company, every sports club, whatever,” Scariolo said. “We are learning that sometimes we love to have a great plan going from day one to the last one, (but) it’s good to know that we are able to react to different circumstances. We learned how not to panic and try to face what’s going on with a positive attitude.”
There’s more on the Raptors:
- Toronto isn’t making an effort to move Kyle Lowry, Smith states in an examination of the team’s position ahead of the March 25 trade deadline. Fred VanVleet, Pascal Siakam and OG Anunoby should be considered untouchable, Smith adds, and the team prefers to hold on to Norman Powell. That means any trade will have to involve the bench, where the Raptors hope to upgrade without taking on a lot of long-term salary.
- Lowry’s agent disputes a report Friday that the point guard is eyeing a move to the Sixers. Appearing on Sirius XM Radio, Mark Bartelstein said there’s no truth to the story (hat tip to Brad Botkin of CBS Sports). “There was a story today that he’s pushing to go to Philadelphia. That’s just not true,” Bartelstein said. “That story came out today, and so I had to get on the phone with (Raptors president) Masai (Ujiri) and (general manager) Bobby (Webster) and make sure they knew that certainly wasn’t coming from us.”
- For Donta Hall, signing a 10-day deal with the Raptors just meant going from one G League team to another, writes Blake Murphy of The Athletic. Hall has been impressive in his first two games and may eventually get a chance in Toronto because he’s a natural center.