Nets hire Hall of Famer Nash as head coach

The Brooklyn Nets named Hall of Famer and two-time league MVP Steve Nash as the franchise’s 23rd head coach on Thursday. Nash, 46, spent the past five seasons as a player development consultant with the Golden State Warriors. He signed a four-year contract with the Nets, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

The Brooklyn Nets named Hall of Famer and two-time league MVP Steve Nash as

the franchise’s 23rd head coach on Thursday.

“After meeting with a number of highly accomplished coaching candidates fromdiverse backgrounds, we knew we had a difficult decision to make,” generalmanager Sean Marks said in a news release. “In Steve we see a leader,communicator and mentor who will garner the respect of our players. I have hadthe privilege to know Steve for many years. One of the great on-court leadersin our game, I have witnessed firsthand his basketball acumen and selflessapproach to prioritize team success. His instincts for the game, combined withan inherent ability to communicate with and unite players towards a commongoal, will prepare us to compete at the highest levels of the league.”

Nash, 46, spent the past five seasons as a player development consultant withthe Golden State Warriors. The team made four consecutive trips to the NBAFinals and won two championships during that span.

This is his first head coaching job. He signed a four-year contract with theNets, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

“I am honored to have this opportunity with such a first-class organizationand would like to thank Sean, (owner) Joe (Tsai) and his wife, Clara, forhaving faith in my ability to lead this team forward,” Nash said in therelease. “Coaching is something I knew I wanted to pursue when the time wasright, and I am humbled to be able to work with the outstanding group ofplayers and staff we have here in Brooklyn. I am as excited about theprospects of the team on the court as I am about moving to Brooklyn with myfamily and becoming impactful members of this community.”

The 2018 Hall of Fame inductee played point guard for 18 seasons in the NBAfrom 1996-97 to 2013-14. The eight-time All-Star earned back-to-back MostValuable Player awards with the Phoenix Suns in 2004-05 and 2005-06, becomingjust the 10th player to win the award in consecutive seasons.

Nash led the league in assists five times and ranks third on the all-time listwith 10,335 assists, trailing only John Stockton and former Nets coach JasonKidd. He also tallied 17,387 points, 3,642 rebounds and 1,685 3-pointers in1,217 games with the Suns, Dallas Mavericks and Los Angeles Lakers.

“We are excited to welcome Steve to the Nets family and look forward to asuccessful and meaningful partnership,” Tsai in a statement. “Steve shares ourvision for the future of this franchise and his character exemplifies the coreprinciples of our organization in working to serve our communities. I can’twait for Steve to get started.”

A native of Victoria, British Columbia, Nash is one of the most accomplishedfigures in Canadian basketball history. He was a member of Team Canada from1993-2004 and served as general manager for the senior national team from2012-19. Nash played collegiately for four seasons at Santa Clara Universityprior to being selected 15th overall in the 1996 NBA Draft.

The Nets also announced that interim coach Jacque Vaughn will return toBrooklyn as lead assistant coach.

“Jacque has been an integral part of our program and a key contributor to thegrowth and development of our entire organization,” Marks said. “His role indeveloping our players both on and off the court and his influence driving ourculture have been invaluable. Our players will benefit from the continuity ofJacque’s presence, and we are extremely fortunate to keep him in our Netsfamily.”

The Nets finished 35-37 and were swept in the first round of the EasternConference playoffs this season. Superstar forward Kevin Durant missed theentire season with an Achilles injury and All-Star point guard Kyrie Irvingwas limited to just 20 games due to injuries.

–Field Level Media

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