WNBA

WNBA COACHING UPDATES

WNBA COACHING UPDATES

CHICAGO SKY ROUND OUT COACHING STAFF

Chicago Sky Announce Jeff House and Christie Sides to Assist Chatman in 2011–

courtesy Chicago Sky release

Christie Sides

CHICAGO, December 28, 2010 – Jeff House and Christie Sides will fill out the Chicago Sky coaching staff under first-year General Manager and Head Coach Pokey Chatman, Chatman announced today.
House brings over 20 years of basketball coaching experience at the NBA, WNBA, College and high school levels to the Chicago Sky bench while Sides has coached for over eight years at the professional, international and college levels.
“I’m thrilled to have both Jeff and Christie join my staff,” Chatman said. “This definitely provides us with the momentum needed to accomplish our goals.”

Jeff House

From 1998-2004 House was a member of the New York Liberty staff under head coach Richie Adubato. Beginning as the video coordinator and advance scout, House quickly climbed the ladder eventually becoming an assistant coach and instrumental part of the 1999, 2000 and 2002 WNBA Eastern Conference Championship winning Liberty teams. House started in New York as a member of the Knicks game night video staff in 1998.
In 2005, House was a top assistant with the Washington Mystics before taking the recruiting coordinator/assistant coaching position at the University of Virginia. House helped propel the Virginia Women’s Basketball program to the top of the Atlantic Coast Conference by bringing in top-ranked recruiting classes in each of his years with the program.

Throughout House’s two decades coaching basketball, he’s had the opportunity to work with a plethora of top coaches. He got his start in 1985 under former Houston Rockets Head Coach Jeff Van Gundy at McQuaid Jesuit High School in Rochester, NY. He later coached under current Orlando Magic Head Coach Stan Van Gundy at Lowell University and Bob Wenzel at Rutgers University.

Since 2008, Sides has been an assistant on Spartak Moscow Region in Russia, where she helped Chatman lead Sky center Sylvia Fowles and Spartak to consecutive FIBA Euroleague Championships in 2008 and 2009. Sides also served as an assistant on the Slovakian Women’s National Team coaching staff since 2008 helping the team qualify for the European Championships in 2009, 2010 and 2011. The Slovaks took 8th place in 2009, their highest finish of Sides’ tenure.

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NY LIBERTY COMPLETE COACHING CHANGES

NEW YORK LIBERTY ANNOUNCE THREE NEW ADDITIONS TO BASKETBALL OPERATIONS STAFF

story provided by NY Liberty press release

NEW YORK, December 17, 2010 – New York Liberty Head Coach and General Manager John Whisenant announced today three new additions to the team’s basketball operations staff. Jill Culbertson will join the Liberty as Assistant General Manager, Monique Ambers as Assistant Coach and West Coast Scout, and Lady Grooms as Assistant Coach and East Coast Scout.

Lady Hardmon-Grooms

Monique Ambers

“Jill, Monique and Lady were a big part of our success in Sacramento, and I am excited to have them join me in New York to work with the Liberty,” said Whisenant. “We have won a WNBA Championship together and hope to bring one to New York and the Liberty fans in the near future.”

Culbertson served as the as the Manager of Basketball Operations for the Monarchs for two seasons (2008-2009) where she worked closely with Whisenant handling player contracts and team operations. Previously she served three seasons (2005-2007) as the team’s Equipment Manager and four seasons (2001-2004) as a Locker Room Attendant.

Ambers spent eight seasons (2002-2009) with the Sacramento Monarchs serving as Assistant Coach, helping guide the team to the 2005 WNBA Championship. Prior to that, she was an Assistant Coach at George Washington University from 1994-1997 where the Lady Colonials had a .808 winning percentage (80-19). Ambers played for the Western Conference Champion Phoenix Mercury during the inaugural season of the WNBA in 1997. Ambers has also played professional basketball in Greece, Germany, Spain and China.

Grooms spent two seasons in Player Development for the Monarchs after serving as a scout for two seasons. Since 2009 she has been Head Coach for the women’s basketball teams at the Arlington Christian School in Fairburn, Georgia, where she has helped guide the team to two state championships and been awarded state and regional coach of the year honors. Grooms started coaching after encouragement from her mentor, Hall of Fame coach Andy Lander from Grooms’ alma mater University of Georgia. Grooms played for the Monarchs for seven seasons (1998-2004) after playing for the Utah Starzz during the WNBA inaugural season in 1997. During her WNBA career Grooms scored over 1,000 points and grabbed over 500 rebounds. She has also played professional basketball in Turkey, Hungary and Italy.

The New York Liberty will be temporarily relocated to Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey during the 2011, 2012, and 2013 seasons while Madison Square Garden undergoes a comprehensive, top-to-bottom transformation. The Garden will close for the next three summers for work on the transformation to be completed. Prudential Center is a convenient 15 minutes away from The Garden by train.

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NEW HEAD COACH/GM FOR NY LIBERTY

NEW YORK LIBERTY NAME JOHN WHISENANT
HEAD COACH AND GENERAL MANAGER

NEW YORK, October 12, 2010 – The New York Liberty today announced that John Whisenant has been named Head Coach and General Manager for the team. Whisenant brings more than 30 years of basketball experience to the Liberty, including a WNBA Championship and Coach of the Year honors with the Sacramento Monarchs. The announcement was made by Scott O’Neil, president of MSG Sports. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“John is a proven winner with tremendous experience and an impressive resume, including a WNBA Championship and Coach of the Year award in 2005,” said Mr. O’Neil. “Liberty fans will appreciate how hard the team will play on both ends of the court, and enjoy the continuation of the journey to build a team that will bring a title to New York.”

Whisenant spent seven seasons with the Sacramento Monarchs serving as General Manager; he also added head coaching duties for three full seasons (2004-06) and two partial seasons (2003, 2009). As Head Coach Whisenant compiled a .612 winning percentage (85-54) with the Monarchs during the regular season, which is the third best all-time among WNBA coaches. He was named WNBA Coach of the Year in 2005, the same year he guided the team to its first-ever WNBA Championship. In two of the three full seasons Whisenant served as coach, a Monarchs player was named WNBA Most Improved Player. During his tenure with the Monarchs the team reached the playoffs six out of seven seasons, including two conference finals runs and a conference championship. Whisenant’s playoff coaching record is 19-10.

“It is an honor to be named Head Coach and General Manager for the New York Liberty and to join the Madison Square Garden organization,” said Mr. Whisenant. “New York is a great basketball city with amazing history, and I look forward to the challenge of bringing a championship to the city.”

Whisenant’s successful career as a college basketball coach includes stints at the University of Mexico, Arizona Western College and Coffeyville Community College, where he combined for an impressive .734 winning percentage (282-102).As head coach at Arizona Western University, he led the team to three league championships. While on the coaching staff at the University of New Mexico, the team won two WAC Championships.

The New York Liberty will be temporarily relocated to Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey during the 2011, 2012, and 2013 seasons while Madison Square Garden undergoes a comprehensive, top-to-bottom transformation. The Garden will close for the next three summers for work on the transformation to be completed. Prudential Center is a convenient 15 minutes away from The Garden by train.

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Trudi Lacey Named Mystics GM/Head Coach

courtesy of Washington Mystics

courtesy WNBA.com

Monumental Sports & Entertainment vice chairman and Mystics president and managing partner, Sheila C. Johnson announced today that Trudi Lacey has been named the team’s general manager and head coach. Lacey joined the team in 2009 as an assistant coach. In 2010 she was promoted to director of basketball operations. She replaces Angela Taylor whose contract recently expired and Julie Plank who will not return to the team.

“We appreciate the patience of our fans as we moved through this process. We were in discussion with Julie about a joint gm/coach role as well as our philosophy moving forward. Julie only wanted to coach the team and both sides agreed to part ways. I am excited to have Trudi Lacey as our general manager and head coach. She is a leader that brings a great deal of experience to her new position, having previously served as the general manager and head coach of the Charlotte Sting. She is very familiar with our team as she has been part of our organization for the last two years. We had a fantastic season and our fan support was tremendous. All of us are excited to begin 2011. Our franchise is 100% committed to taking the next step, and we are excited to have our fans take it with us,” stated Johnson.

Lacey brings a wealth of experience to her new position. She was the head coach and general manager of the Charlotte Sting from 2003-2006 and has had coaching stints at the University of Maryland, the University of South Florida, NAIA Francis Marion College, Manhattan College and James Madison University. She recently was the head coach at Queens University of Charlotte in North Carolina.

“I would like to thank Ted Leonsis, Sheila Johnson and the entire Mystics organization for the opportunity to coach an extraordinary group of young ladies in front of the best fans in the WNBA,” said Lacey. “We will continue to work hard to continue to build on the success of the past two seasons.”

Lacey played for the legendary Kay Yow at North Carolina State University where she was an All-America basketball player. Her jersey was retired by the school in 2000, and she was named to the ACC All-Legend Team. She was a key contributor with USA Basketball working with the gold medal men’s and women’s basketball teams at the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney.

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