4 Brilliant coaches the Trail Blazers could hire to replace Chauncey Billups

If this season is the end of the line for Portland's head man, where could the franchise turn for a replacement?

Chris Quinn (left), Erik Spoelstra; Miami Heat
Chris Quinn (left), Erik Spoelstra; Miami Heat / Michael Reaves/GettyImages
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Boston Celtics assistant Sam Cassell

It's a mystery why Sam Cassell still hasn't gotten the chance to lead an NBA team. The former point guard won three titles during his 15-year playing career and then hooked up with Doc Rivers with the LA Clippers and followed him to Philadelphia, where he worked closely with breakout star Tyrese Maxey.

Cassell has also been credited with helping develop John Wall, Bradley Beal and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.

He was added to Joe Mazzula's staff in Boston this year not just to be an assistant coach, but to be a veteran coach with a real voice on the bench. Part of the Celtics' downfall last postseason was Mazzula's inexperience; Cassell was brought on board to rectify that.

Boston has been the best team in the league this year - by a wide margin - and is a title favorite.

The 54-year-old described his blunt yet understanding coaching style in an interview with Heavy's Steve Bulpett after joining the Celtics:

"I think I have a way that I can be 100% honest with a player without them taking it personally. And that’s a trait that I know I have. I’m a great listener to players; I’m a former player, so I understand what they’re going through. Like I tell them all the time, I’ve been each player on a team, from the top guy to the 15th player. I’ve been all those guys. I understand what those guys are going through mentally."

Sam Cassell, Celtics assistant coach

Cassell's time as a player and his proven ability to develop young guards would be ideal for a Trail Blazers team currently building around the backcourt trio of Henderson, Sharpe and Simons.