When the NBA season tips off this fall, Tim Duncan and Tony Parker will receive some pointers from a six-time WNBA All-Star.
On Tuesday, the San Antonio Spurs announced Becky Hammon as an assistant coach, making her the first full-time female member of an NBA coaching staff.
Hammon, who is currently playing for the San Antonio Stars, will retire at the end of the season after 16 years in the WNBA to join the 2013-14 NBA champions. The guard will finish her career as the Stars’ all-time leader in assists, points per game, and three-point field goals made. Named one of the WNBA’s Top 15 Players of All-Time in 2011, the guard averaged 13.1 points, 3.8 assists, and 2.5 rebounds per game during her career.
“I very much look forward to the addition of Becky Hammon to our staff,” said Spurs Head Coach Gregg Popovich. “Having observed her working with our team this past season, I’m confident her basketball IQ, work ethic, and interpersonal skills will be a great benefit to the Spurs.”
A three-time All-American at Colorado State, Hammon made her professional basketball debut with the New York Liberty in 1999 as an undrafted player. She played eight seasons with the Liberty before she was traded to the Stars.
“Hard work and talent got her noticed and earned her a roster spot, and she never looked back,” WNBA President Laurel J. Richie said. “In addition to all her accomplishments, Becky’s feisty leadership and no-look passes have made her a fan favorite. We thank Becky for all her contributions to the growth of this wonderful game and we wish her all the best on her future endeavors.”
Before Hammon’s appointment to the Spurs coaching staff, Lisa Boyer was the only other woman to work with an NBA coaching staff. Boyer was a volunteer assistant coach with the Cleveland Cavaliers during the 2001-02 season.
Photo: Gus Ruelas/AP Photo, File