Photo: FIBA/YouTube screenshot

According to NBA insider Marc Stein, there is growing speculation that Sergio Scariolo is the frontrunner to become the new head coach of the Raptors. While there is no consensus among league sources, the level of interest shown by Toronto suggests that Scariolo is in pole position for the coveted role. However, Stein also mentioned another candidate, Fernández, as a “name to watch,” indicating that the Raptors are keeping their options open.

Scariolo, a 62-year-old Italian coach, boasts an impressive resume, particularly with the Spanish national team. Under his leadership, Spain has achieved notable success, including Olympic silver and bronze, as well as a gold medal in the 2019 FIBA World Cup and multiple EuroBasket titles. He also served as an assistant coach to Nick Nurse on the Raptors from 2018 to 2021, which included the team’s championship-winning season in 2019.

Reports suggest that Scariolo was scheduled to have a second meeting with Raptors officials, potentially in Toronto. However, complications with his commitments to coach Virtus Bologna in the Italian League playoffs may require the meeting to be conducted remotely. Raptors president Masai Ujiri and Bobby Webster have already visited Scariolo in Italy earlier in their search process.