Spurs assistant Becky Hammon seriously sued by Aces, Liberty for head coach vacancies: Sources

The New York Liberty and Las Vegas Aces are in serious pursuit of San Antonio Spurs assistant and WNBA legend Becky Hammon to be the new head coach of their respective franchises, and Hammon has a mutual interest in making a potential jump, according to reports. sources athleticism.

If Hammon chooses to accept the Liberty or Aces job, it should happen before the WNBA’s free agency in January, sources say. athleticism.

Liberty’s head coach position is currently open after New York and Walt Hopkins split in early December. The Ace position is currently held by Bill Laimbeer, who has coached the WNBA since 2002. If Hammon accepted the Ace position, Laimbeer would step down and potentially fill a different organizational role, sources said.

Hammon played 16 seasons in the WNBA, the first eight with the New York Liberty and the second with the San Antonio Stars. She retired in 2014 and in 2018 MGM Grand Resorts International bought the Stars and moved the team to Las Vegas, renaming the franchise the Aces.

Since becoming an assistant coach of Spurs’ staff under Gregg Popovich in 2014, Hammon has had a lot of firsts. In July 2015, Hammon became the first-ever woman to serve as head coach of the NBA Summer League, leading the Spurs’ summer team to a championship. In 2018, she became the first woman to be interviewed for an NBA head coaching position when she spoke to the Milwaukee Bucks. On December 30, 2020, Hammon served as interim head coach when Popovich was kicked out in a game against the Los Angeles Lakers.

Last offseason, Hammon interviewed the Orlando Magic and Portland Trail Blazers. She became the first woman to reach the finalist stage in an NBA head coach search process when she was one of the last candidates to meet the Portland property before Chauncey Billups was hired. .

In January 2021, Raiders owner Mark Davis bought the Aces and in May the franchise hired Nikki Fargas to be the team president. Davis and Fargas have both expressed how important it is for the Aces to be in touch with former players from every iteration of the Aces (Utah Starzz, San Antonio Silver Stars and San Antonio Stars). As part of those efforts, the Aces withdrew Hammon’s No. 25 jersey last September.

“It’s another great honor. I really appreciate that the Aces dig into the history of the program and honor the people who came before it, ”she said. “I think that’s how we build culture. This is how you build character within your organization. And I think Mark Davis and the group of owners are really trying to make it a family affair and bring in the previous organizations and players who impacted not only the Aces but the Stars and the WNBA as well. , and honoring that heritage, is super special.

The Liberty parted ways with Hopkins in early December after two seasons with the franchise. Hopkins worked closely with general manager Jonathan Kolb on a ‘rebuilding hybrid’ that saw the franchise go 12-20 and advance to the playoffs in 2021 after hitting 2-20 in the season. of the 2020 bubble.

The Aces have finished first in WNBA West for the past two years, with A’ja Wilson taking home the 2020 regular season MVP honors. Laimbeer’s style has leaned much more on indoor play and obtaining from the free throw line while much of the rest of the league, Liberty included, pulled their offense to rely heavily on 3 points. It should be noted that the position of CEO of Aces is currently open after the departure of former GM Dan Padover to become GM of Atlanta Dream in October.

(Photo: Ronald Cortes / Getty Images)


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