Improved coaching is the next step for Africa to produce more NBA players, writes Shaun Powell of NBA.com. The league held its annual Africa Game on Saturday, which brought several NBA coaches to the continent for a week of teaching. Powell notes that most of the players who represented Team Africa in the contest learned their skills while growing up in other places.
“The coaches here are getting involved in coaching clinics, teaching techniques and fundamentals like never before,” said Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry, who was part of the event. “Some of the high school coaches are very interested in learning more and understanding how to teach. I think it’s all progressing. The league saw the issue at hand and addressed it and I’ll be shocked if this is not the place where the next wave of NBA players come from.”
There’s more news from around the basketball world:
- Commissioner Adam Silver has privately voiced his concerns to some owners and team officials over the idea of coaches serving as executives, relays Adrian Wojnarowksi of ESPN. The Clippers became the latest team to abandon that approach on Friday when they made Doc Rivers a full-time coach and promoted Lawrence Frank to president of basketball operations. Gregg Popovich, Stan Van Gundy and Tom Thibodeau are the only remaining coaches who serve both roles.
- Byron Scott tells TMZ that he’s through with coaching and has no desire to return to the NBA. Scott, 56, was fired by the Lakers at the end of the 2015/16 season after two years with the team. He compiled a 38–126 record for a .232 winning percentage that is the worst of any coach in franchise history. He also frequently clashed with the team’s younger players. Scott served as head coach of the Nets, Hornets and Cavaliers before coming to L.A.
- The G League is hoping to eliminate a buyout loophole by requiring anyone who gets waived to remain in the player pool for 14 days before being released from their contract, writes Adam Johnson of 2 Ways & 10 Days. In the past, overseas teams have been able to avoid $40K or $50K buyouts as teams would release players as a gesture of goodwill when they received offers. Johnson says the new rule amounts to a no-compete clause, which is illegal in some states.