Stars point guard and future Spurs assistant coach Becky Hammon
The San Antonio Spurs announced today that Becky Hammon will join the coaching staff for the 2014-2015 season. Hammon, who is currently playing in her final season with the San Antonio Stars, will be the first female assistant coach in NBA history.
“I very much look forward to the addition of Becky Hammon to our staff,” said 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.”
With the Stars, Hammon has recorded one of the best all-time careers in the WNBA. Hammon ranks seventh in WNBA history in points (with 5,809), fourth in assists (1,687) and sixth in games (445). Playing for 16 seasons, the 5'6" Colorado State alumna and six-time All-Star announced that she would retire after this season. Eager to retain Hammon's point guard court sense, the Spurs signed her to the staff for the 2014 season. Unlike player contracts, the Spurs do not announce the details of staff agreements.
Transitioning from the Stars to the Spurs, Hammon will become the first full-time female coach in NBA history. For the 2001-2002 season, Lisa Boyer was an assistant coach with the Cleveland Cavaliers, though she didn't travel and was paid by the WNBA's Cleveland Rockers, not the Cavs.
A three-time winner of the NBA's Coach of the Year award, Gregg Popovich is renowned as an all-time great, with a natural understanding of team ball and astounding management skills. But he's also a forward-thinker at the helm, consistently on the right side of the social issues of the NBA. "She's been perfect," Popovich previously told the NBA's Inside Stuff. "She knows when to talk, and she knows when to shut up. That's as simple as you can put it, and a lot of people don't figure that out ... She knows how to do it, and our players really respond to her. She's just a natural."