PORTLAND — Scott Morrison got his first taste of the NBA Development League last year when he took a volunteer position with the Maine Red Claws. 

Less than a year later, Morrison has gone from an unpaid intern to the Red Claw’s newest head coach. The Prince Edward Island native was officially introduced as Maine’s fourth head coach in the team’s six-year history during a press conference Friday.

“People are seeing this league as a great opportunity to advance their career,” Morrison said. “I’m very fortunate to have this position, but I think I represent a success story as to what can happen in this league going from an intern position to a head coach, not that I didn’t have the experience before. But in one year, if you work hard, put your head down and really grind it out, opportunities are going to be there.” 

Morrison replaces Mike Taylor, who was not retained after two years with the Red Claws. Taylor led Maine to its only postseason appearance during the 2012-13 season and finished with a 45-55 record. 

Morrison brings with him 11 years of coaching experience, guiding the Lakehead University men’s basketball team since 2003. The Wolves advanced to the Canadian Inter-university Sport Final 8 in four straight seasons under Morrison’s direction. He was named Ontario University Athletics Conference coach of the year in 2010. 

“I just try to outwork people and give it all I have,” Morrison said. “I consider myself not necessarily a genius, but someone who’s willing to learn and take whatever I can from whatever resources I have around me.”

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Morrison’s coaching experience isn’t exclusively at Lakehead. He’s served as an assistant for Canada’s national junior team since 2012. He’s was invited to be an assistant on the World Select coaching staff at the 2014 Nike Hoop Summit. 

In his first season with the Red Claws, Morrison has three goals: player development, winning games and maintaining and growing the relationship with the community. 

“I feel real comfortable working with players,” Morrison said. “Player development has always been a key thing for me. Even in college we weren’t in a very populated area, so sometimes we had to get lesser recruits and try to make them into better players. That experience is going to help me.”

Red Claws president Dajuan Eubanks said he was happy to see the Celtics promote from within.

“Scott truly understands this community as he was part of some of the community events,” Eubanks said. “The fans and business community alike will enjoy getting to know Scott. He’s going to bring a huge piece of what we’re trying to do as far as building and continuing to build upon the tradition of being apart of the Celtics organization as their minor league affiliate.” 

Growing up in a maritime city, Morrison said he feels right at home in Portland. 

“One of the reasons I picked this area is I was familiar with it from growing up close to his area,” Morrison said. “I wanted to be closer to home and this is the type of city that feels like a maritime city for me.” 

Morrison makes his coaching debut with the Red Claws on Nov. 14 when they travel to Oklahoma City. Maine’s first home game is Nov. 21 against Canton. 

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