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Spurs name Becky Hammon as NBA’s second female assistant coach

Aug 5, 2014, 1:13 PM EDT

becky hammon spurs

UPDATE 1:47 p.m.: ESPN reminds us that there has already been a female assistant coach in the NBA — once, 12 years ago.

“Hammon is not the first woman hired to be an NBA assistant. Lisa Boyer, now associate head women’s basketball coach at South Carolina, served on John Lucas‘ staff in Cleveland in the 2001-02 season.”

Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today looked into it, however, and it doesn’t seem as though Boyer’s role was all that significant — or even one that was in an official capacity with the Cavaliers.

“Just got off the phone with John Lucas. Lisa Boyer didn’t travel with the team and he said she was paid by WNBA’s Cleveland Rockers.”

1:13 p.m.: The San Antonio Spurs have been the NBA’s model franchise for success over the past 17 seasons, and their latest move is a groundbreaking one that other teams may follow for years to come.

Becky Hammon, a six-time WNBA All-Star who is finishing up a 16-year career as a player, has been named by the Spurs as the NBA’s second female assistant coach.

From the official release:

Hammon, who is currently in her 16th WNBA season, announced on July 23 that she would retire as a player at the conclusion of the 2014 season. Named one of the WNBA’s Top 15 Players of All-Time in July of 2011, Hammon ranks seventh in WNBA history in points (with 5,809), fourth in assists (1,687) and sixth in games (445).

“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.”

Hammon may have faced challenges trying to coach immature players in a different organization that isn’t as well-run as the one in San Antonio. But the environment of professionalism and hard work that Popovich has created there make this the perfect setting for her to get her start.

For more on Hammon and her coaching beginnings with Popovich and the Spurs, check out the Inside Stuff feature in the video clip below.

  1. rexgrossman8 - Aug 5, 2014 at 1:19 PM

    Good for her. And the NBA. Pretty groundbreaking stuff.

  2. rayburns - Aug 5, 2014 at 1:20 PM

    Congratulations to Ms. Hammon and to the San Antonio Spurs! Boy, has the NBA leapfrogged over the other leagues and left them in the dust when it comes to equality and fairness.

    • floreskins - Aug 5, 2014 at 1:26 PM

      Now, if they could only get near the other leagues in terms of the quality of the product.

  3. hojo20 - Aug 5, 2014 at 1:21 PM

    She’s cute.

    • money2long - Aug 5, 2014 at 2:28 PM

      And she could probably run circles round you on the court.
      Gotta love it.

  4. bucrightoff - Aug 5, 2014 at 1:23 PM

    It’ll sure be different hearing Becky ask for some “nasty” as opposed to Popovich.

  5. lastdukestreetking - Aug 5, 2014 at 1:30 PM

    Congrats to her and to the Spurs for their progressive outlook on a way to improve an already well-run organization!

  6. 88heatnation - Aug 5, 2014 at 1:31 PM

    Want to hear a joke? Woman’s rights

    • money2long - Aug 5, 2014 at 2:29 PM

      As distasteful as that was, I’m ashamed to say I laughed.

  7. logicalcomment - Aug 5, 2014 at 1:40 PM

    i wonder who will be he 1st player to bang her.

    i vote T. Parker

    • 76ersdoubletank - Aug 5, 2014 at 2:16 PM

      Nah, it’s already been worked out. It’s Popavich

    • 4thquartermagic - Aug 5, 2014 at 2:18 PM

      Haha that’s an obvious choice as Parker was already getting too friendly in the video.

    • money2long - Aug 5, 2014 at 2:30 PM

      Player? Y’all thinking too small. Try referree ! Spurs getting every call next season !!

    • ProBasketballPundit - Aug 5, 2014 at 4:24 PM

      Violet Palmer already has.

    • amlowlife - Aug 5, 2014 at 4:55 PM

      Look up “Becky Hammon boyfriend” and you’ll find out that Tony Parker has already nailed that stuff. Guess they have dated already. May still be.

      Now that would be interesting–having your girlfriend–or even ex-girlfriend–coach you in hoops. Hmmm…

  8. clesportsfan - Aug 5, 2014 at 2:15 PM


  9. 6thsense10 - Aug 5, 2014 at 2:46 PM

    I never understood why men could coach both men and women basketball teams but women were regulated to coaching only women basketball players. Something about that never seemed right to me. There’s no question in my mind Pat Summit could have been successful coaching men’s college basketball.

    • smoothaswilkes - Aug 5, 2014 at 2:56 PM

      see the comments above. that’s why.

    • fanofthegame79 - Aug 5, 2014 at 3:02 PM

      It probably has to do with maturity of the people (boys) they’re coaching. Could you really see a bunch of teenaged boys listening to an attractive female coach and taking her seriously? Sure she might have great insight, but most of them would be staring at her chest.

      • sw19womble - Aug 5, 2014 at 3:13 PM

        Also, difficult for them to run with boners.

      • florida727 - Aug 6, 2014 at 4:33 PM

        So you’re saying that staring at her chest can only be done by teenage boys? Damn it…

      • fanofthegame79 - Aug 7, 2014 at 1:02 AM

        No sir, stare away!

    • asimonetti88 - Aug 5, 2014 at 8:28 PM

      Part of the reason is that organized women’s basketball did not really take off until the 1960s and 70s, so the women’s game is behind the men’s game simply for that reason (yes, the reason it didn’t take off until then is because of discrimination, but you can’t deny facts- it did start later, and it is behind because of that). The women’s game is continuing to evolve and grow, and as it is, you’re seeing things like this happen.

  10. proceednet - Aug 5, 2014 at 3:12 PM

    Some will argue that the WNBA has to use more of the technical aspects of the game. They can’t rely on a single “superstar” to carry the team. In the NBA, they’ll design their entire team around a superstar. Not the case in the WNBA. Hammon can bring a further polish to the “team” dynamic that carried the Spurs to the championship.

    • drunkenjunk - Aug 5, 2014 at 3:49 PM

      those that argue that are idiots. Its a nice way of saying women’s basketball is terrible.

      • 00maltliquor - Aug 5, 2014 at 8:05 PM

        Let’s see, 5,809 career points in 16 seasons (445 games= 13ppg) gets you 7th all-time in scoring…………..uh, yeah. I think that says enough.

  11. willardj - Aug 5, 2014 at 3:12 PM

    Think it’s a pretty good idea. Sometimes a lot of the lesser known players have trouble finding chicks to bang on the road.

  12. drunkenjunk - Aug 5, 2014 at 3:49 PM

    This is a joke. She’ll flame out in a year.

  13. ProBasketballPundit - Aug 5, 2014 at 4:30 PM

    Like Beyoncé, she better tell them boys to put a ring on it.

    • ProBasketballPundit - Aug 5, 2014 at 4:39 PM

      You’re probably thinking, “Do you mean a championship ring, wedding ring, or NuvaRing?”

      Well, dealer’s choice I guess.

      • 00maltliquor - Aug 5, 2014 at 8:09 PM

        LLOOLL!! NICE save 😅

  14. elcaminobilly - Aug 5, 2014 at 5:00 PM

    Great news for her and presumably the Spurs (or else they wouldn’t have made the move) but some of the comments above show how far we still have to go in the intelligence and maturity fields.

  15. bbk1000 - Aug 5, 2014 at 5:08 PM

    Nice… she the first Russian coach?

    She’s garbage….

  16. dablakdrphil - Aug 5, 2014 at 6:25 PM

    Love it!! I’ve watched Becky Hammon play for years when she played for the New York Liberty and with the San Antonio Silverstars (Yes I watch and support women’s basketball) and I think she’s a great addition. Easily one of the best point guards to ever play in the WNBA with her competitive spirit always gave her an edge.

    Nice pick for the Spurs

  17. 00maltliquor - Aug 5, 2014 at 8:22 PM

    NO MA’AM

    -Al Bundy

  18. rodyaugu - Aug 5, 2014 at 8:28 PM

    TP will try to holla.

  19. rodyaugu - Aug 5, 2014 at 8:38 PM

    Can she restrain pop when he goes after the refs?

  20. djshnooks - Aug 6, 2014 at 7:41 AM

    And actually, the Sabres of the NHL have had a female skating coach for years.

    The NBA is nothing special.

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