San Antonio Spurs hire first female assistant coach in NBA history

BY Justin Scuiletti  August 5, 2014 at 5:41 PM EDT
Six-time WNBA all-star Becky Hammon will become the first full-time, paid assistant coach in the NBA starting next season. Photo by Becky Hammon

Six-time WNBA all-star Becky Hammon will become the first full-time, paid assistant coach in the NBA starting next season. Photo by Becky Hammon

Becky Hammon is hanging up her playing shoes and lacing up her coaching ones, all while making history in the process.

The San Antonio Spurs announced Tuesday that they have hired Hammon, a 16-season veteran and six-time all-star with the WNBA, as an assistant coach — marking the first time a woman has ever been hired for the position in the NBA.

Hammon, who is playing in her final season for the WNBA’s San Antonio Stars, is no stranger to her team’s NBA counterpart. The athlete worked with the Spurs and their head coach, Gregg Popovich, while rehabbing a knee injury in 2013.

“I very much look forward to the addition of Becky Hammon to our staff,” said 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.”