Reports: Billy Donovan to be named new Thunder Head Coach

Billy Donovan coaching the Florida Gators against the Ohio State Buckeyes during the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship game at the Georgia Dome on April 2, 2007 in Atlanta, Georgia.

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Numerous reports from ESPN and Yahoo say that University of Florida head coach Billy Donovan will be named Thunder head coach as early as Thursday.

ESPN’s Marc Stein says that Donovan could be in OKC as soon as Thursday.

Donovan has spent the last 19 years as Gators head coach leading the program to back to back national titles in 2006 and 2007.

He’s been wildly successful at the NCAA level. He’s appeared in 4 Final Four’s, won 72% of his games and won 6 SEC titles with the Gators.

Donovan has been considered the front runner ever since Scott Brooks was fired last week. This is Donovan’s second crack at becoming an NBA head coach. In 2007 he agreed to become the head coach of the Orlando Magic, but backed out at the last minute to return to Florida. He never coached a game with the franchise.

However, Donovan has been coveted by the NBA numerous times. He turned down jobs in Cleveland and Minnesota last year.

Other reports state that after reaching out, Kevin Durant has had a positive reception about the hire.

Sports Illustrated’s David Gardner reported late Wednesday that Donovan to OKC might not be a done deal. He cited one source as saying “Not sure it happens at all, but am struggling to see a way it happens tonight, if it does at all.”

No official word from the Thunder on how the head coaching search is progressing.



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