Australian League Coach Trevor Gleeson To Join Raptors As Assistant

Raptors head coach Nick Nurse will be adding former Perth Wildcats head coach Trevor Gleeson to his bench for the 2021/22 season, tweets Marc Stein.

As Stein notes, Gleeson led the Wildcats to five National Basketball League championships in 2014, 2016, 2017, 2019, and 2020. Gleeson is the reigning NBL Coach of the Year for the 2020/21 season. Gleeson asked to be released from the final year of his contract with Perth this weekend in order to pursue an NBA opportunity, per a team press statement.

Gleeson led the club to a 171-99 record during his eight seasons with Perth. The Wildcats made it to the championship round again this year, but lost to Melbourne United.

Nurse has been the head man in Toronto since the team’s championship 2018/19 season. He inked a multiyear extension with the club ahead of the 2020/21 season that is set to take him through at least 2024. The Raptors have a 226-138 record under Nurse.

Josh Lewenberg of TSN tweets that Nurse appreciates assistants with head coaching track records, which may have added to Gleeson’s appeal. Lewenberg adds (Twitter link) that Gleeson also served as a basketball coach in Korea and the NBA G League, and moonlit as an Australian rules football coach.

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