Houston Rockets: Assistant Coaches Kelvin Sampson and Chris Finch Emerge as Candidate for Sixers Head Coach

By Michael Ma

Jan 4, 2013; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Houston Rockets assistant coach Chris Finch (right) talks with player Jeremy Lin as their team plays the Milwaukee Bucks at the Bradley Center. Houston defeated Milwaukee 115-101. Mandatory Credit: Mary Langenfeld-USA TODAY Sports

According to reports, the Philadelphia 76ers are rumored to target Houston Rockets assistant coaches Chris Finch and Kelvin Sampson as their top candidates to be their next head coach.  This comes as no surprise considering new general manager’s Sam Hinkie’s background with Houston.

Sampson is also currently a candidate for the Milwaukee Bucks and Detroit Pistons head coaching positions, along with another Rockets assistant coach, J.B. Bickerstaff.

Finch, 43, played in the British Basketball League in the early 1990’s, before earning his first head coaching job with the Sheffield Sharks, and was named the BBL Coach of the Year in the 1998-’99 season.   He began coaching in the states in 2009, when he was named as head coach of the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, and was named D-League Coach of the Year in the 2009-2010 season.  Finch has been touted by some in the Rockets organization as a potential successor to current coach Kevin McHale.

Three of the four assistants on the current staff have all emerged as head coaching candidates, and it’s a possibility that Sampson, Bickerstaff, and Finch can all be on the bench as a head coach for some team next season.