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Basketball

7 black female NBA coaches all time

lack female NBA coaches all time
IVEY NIELE. Photo/ Ivey Niele
  • Black female NBA coaches exemplify the role women play in basketball
  • Women now make up around a third of NBA coaching staff
  • They have a deep passion for and mastery of the sport

The black female NBA coaches all time phenomena are exemplifies the role women play in basketball.

Today, women now make up around a third of NBA coaching staff. These women bring a wide range of basketball expertise to the league.

From playing in the WNBA to coaching at the collegiate level to working as trainers for NBA clubs. However, they do have one thing in common: a deep passion for and mastery of the sport.

Here they are.

BECKY HAMMON

black female NBA coaches all time

Becky Hammons. Photo/Forbes

After eight seasons with the New York Liberty, Becky Hammon became an excellent point guard for the San Antonio Stars of the WNBA.  The club would later rebrand to Las Vegas Aces during the 2018 WNBA season.

Hammon competed for Russia at the Olympics in 2008 and 2012. She was hired as the cub’s first full-time female assistant coach soon after she retired in 2014. She made history as one of the black female NBA coaches all time.

Over the course of six years, she served as an assistant coach for the San Antonio Spurs.

LINDSEY HARDING

black female NBA coaches all time

LINDSEY HARDING. Photo/Bleacher Report

Lindsey Harding is an assistant coach with the Sacramento Kings. In preparation for the 2018–19 NBA season, the Philadelphia 76ers hired her. This made her the first black woman to hold the position of scout in the league.

The former Duke standout scaled the ladder to become the player development coach for the 76ers right before the start of the NBA playoffs. She became the franchise’s first female assistant coach.

Harding joined the Kings’ coaching staff in July 2019 to work under Luke Walton as an assistant coach and player development coach.

KIRSTI TOLIVER

black female NBA coaches all time

KIRSTI TOLIVER. Photo/Los Angeles Times

I never considered becoming a coach, Toliver says but she never forgets that she was still an active WNBA player when she was appointed as an assistant coach by the Wizards in 2018.

She describes it as simply an art of being in the right place at the right time. She enjoys the status of being among black female NBA coaches all time.

After helping out the Wizards during the NBA summer league, Toliver made history by becoming the first active WNBA player to have an NBA coaching post.

She would hang out with the NBA stars before heading to WNBA practices with her former team, the Washington Mystics.

NATALIE NAKASE

black female NBA coaches all time

NATALIE NAKASE. Photo/YouTube

Nakase’s eight-year tenure with the Clippers began with an internship. By working as an assistant coach for the Clippers’ NBA summer league squad in 2014, she made history as the first woman to ever sit on the bench of a professional basketball team.

In 2018, she started working as an assistant coach on a permanent basis. The ex-Bruin player had made history as the first female head coach in men’s professional basketball in Japan before joining the Clippers.

Nakase remarked that she couldn’t ask for a better working environment during her time with clippers.

IVEY NIELE

black female NBA coaches all time

IVEY NIELE. Photo/Forbes

Ivey, who attended Notre Dame and graduated in 2007 and is among the most celebrated black female NBA coaches all time

She spent the past 12 seasons (2007-2019) coaching on the sidelines as an assistant to head coach Muffet McGraw and as the recruitment coordinator.

TERESA WEATHERSPOON

black female NBA coaches all time

TERESA WEATHERSPOON. Photo/The Athletic

New Orleans Pelicans assistant coach Teresa Weatherspoon is more than an assistant when she’s on the court. One may call her a WNBA icon.

The truth is that she is one of the best athletes in the world. She enjoys her job because her players rise to the challenge she presents because she is an inspiration.

And that is the only thing that counts for her.

Weatherspoon previously worked as its director for the New York Liberty of the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA).

During her tenure with Liberty, Weatherspoon discussed the possibility of becoming an NBA coach with her old teammate Swin Cash.

The latter is a former WNBA star who was appointed by the Pelicans as their vice president of basketball operations and team development.

BRITTNI DONALDSON

black female NBA coaches all time

BRITTNI DONALDSON. Photo/ESPN

After working as a statistical analyst for the Raptors’ front office, Donaldson was promoted to assistant coach. At the age of 24, Donaldson joined the NBA coaching staff as the league’s youngest assistant ever.

She says her personal experience differs from the norm to a minor extent. She offered something new to the coaching staff.

For her, it’s not necessarily the amount of time a coach spends in the game that matters, but the perspectives gained.

Teresa is a journalist with years of experience in creating web content. She is a wanderlust at heart, but an outgoing sports writer with focus on tennis, athletics, football, motorsports and NBA.

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