Brett Brown on Rumors About 76ers Job Security: 'The Club Can Respond to That'

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistMay 13, 2019

TORONTO, CANADA - MAY 12: Jimmy Butler #23 and Head Coach Brett Brown of the Philadelphia 76ers huddle together against the Toronto Raptors during Game Seven of the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals of the 2019 NBA Playoffs on May 12, 2019 at the Scotiabank Arena in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)
Jesse D. Garrabrant/Getty Images

Philadelphia 76ers head coach Brett Brown wasn't exactly ready to talk about his job status following his team's heartbreaking 92-90 loss to the Toronto Raptors in Game 7 of their second-round playoff series. 

"The club can respond to that," he told reporters when asked about his job security.

His comments come after Marc Stein of the New York Times reported Brown "has little chance of surviving a second-round exit."

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Brown has been the head coach of the Sixers since the 2013-14 season and went through a number of lean years in the early stages of the Process before the accumulation of assets turned into a core of Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons, Jimmy Butler and Tobias Harris.

He persevered through that period and has now led the 76ers to the second round of the playoffs each of the last two years. However, the talent to make a deeper run was in place each time, considering they lost to a Boston Celtics team without Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward last season and a Toronto Raptors team that featured Kawhi Leonard and an inconsistent supporting cast this time.

The front office also made it quite clear throughout the regular season it wouldn't be happy with an early exit. 

"Very problematic," Managing Partner Josh Harris told Jackie MacMullan of ESPN in March about the potential of an early playoff loss. "It would not be what we're playing for."

"We have enough talent on our roster that if we play the way we're capable of playing, we can beat any team in the East," he went on to say. 

What's more, general manager Elton Brand told reporters in April, "My goal and my expectation is to definitely get past where we got last year. We got to the second round, we lost to Boston. I expect us to pass that."

In fairness to Brown, Philadelphia is arguably one bounce away from playing in the Eastern Conference Finals. Kawhi Leonard's game-winning shot at the buzzer seemed to hang on the rim forever before it dropped through, setting up a showdown between the Raptors and Milwaukee Bucks for the right to play in the NBA Finals.

The 76ers could look quite different next season considering Butler has a player option, Harris is a free agent and Brown's future is hanging in the balance. The head coach made it clear it is up to the team to respond to questions about his status, but it is far from the only thing on the front office's to-do list before the 2019-20 campaign.

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