Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Wizards Hire Scott Brooks as Head Coach

New Wizards head coach Scott Brooks

From our friends at the Washington Wizards...

Washington Wizards President Ernie Grunfeld announced today that Scott Brooks has been hired as the team’s new head coach. Brooks will become the 24th head coach in franchise history. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not released.

"I am beyond thrilled to return to coaching with a team that is filled with such potential and to be able to join an organization that is committed to helping us reach our goals," said Brooks. "I'm very grateful to Ted Leonsis and Ernie Grunfeld for this opportunity, and I can promise the great fans of Washington that we will work extremely hard both on and off the court to represent them in a manner fitting the most powerful city in the world."

Brooks joins the Wizards after serving as the Oklahoma City Thunder's head coach for seven seasons (2008-09 through 2014-15.) With Brooks at the helm, the Thunder amassed a 338-207 (.620) record, tallied four 50-plus win seasons (including 60 wins in 2012-13) made three appearances in the Western Conference Finals (2011, 2012, 2014) and advanced to the 2012 NBA Finals.

"Scott's approach to the game, track record for player development and ability to communicate with his players made him the clear-cut choice to guide our team as we continue to rise as contenders in the Eastern Conference," said Monumental Sports & Entertainment Founder and Wizards Majority Owner Ted Leonsis. "His accomplishments as a coach are matched only by his sterling reputation around the league and we're confident that our fans and players alike will embrace and support him as he leads the way."

Brooks was named the 2009-10 NBA Coach of the Year after guiding OKC to a 50-32 record in his first full season as head coach and leading the team to a 27-win improvement (tied for the eighth-largest in NBA history.) He also was twice named as head coach for the Western Conference All-Star Team (2012 and 2014.) Brooks was originally promoted to head coach of the Thunder on April 15, 2009, after being named interim head coach on November 22, 2008.

"Scott was our top candidate and we moved quickly on an agreement to make him our head coach," said Grunfeld. "His presence, the core players we have returning and our cap flexibility this summer have us all looking forward to the possibilities of what our team can accomplish."

Before joining the Thunder (then Seattle Supersonics) organization as an assistant prior to the 2007-08 season, Brooks spent the 2006-07 season working as an assistant coach with the Sacramento Kings. His NBA coaching career began with the Denver Nuggets, where he served as an assistant coach from 2003-06. Brooks helped lead the Nuggets to the playoffs in each of his three seasons on the bench, with the team compiling a 136-110 (.560) regular season record. In 2000, Brooks was a player/assistant coach with the Los Angeles Stars of the ABA. The following season, he served as the head coach of the Southern California Surf of the ABA, guiding the club to a 23-14 record.

A native of Lathrop, Calif., Brooks played 10 seasons in the NBA, appearing in 680 regular season games with Philadelphia, Minnesota, Houston, Dallas, New York and Cleveland. He won an NBA championship in 1994 as a member of the Houston Rockets. The 5'11" guard retired with career averages of 4.9 points and 2.4 assists.