T.J. Sorrentine

Wizards Announce Brian Keefe’s New Coaching Staff

While Brian Keefe isn’t technically among this offseason’s new head coaches – he took over Washington’s job midway through the 2023/24 campaign when Wes Unseld Jr. transitioned to a front office role – the Wizards have revamped his coaching staff heading into Keefe’s first full season at the helm.

According to a press release from the team, veteran assistant David Vanterpool is the only member of last season’s staff who is returning for 2024/25. The new additions, some of whom were previously reported, are as follows:

  • Adam Caporn, a former G League head coach for the Long Island Nets who spent the past three seasons as an assistant in Brooklyn.
  • J.J. Outlaw, an assistant coach with the Cavaliers for the past five seasons who also had stints with the Lakers and Grizzlies.
  • Brian Randle, who spent last season as a Pistons assistant and previously worked for the Suns (as an assistant) and Timberwolves (as a player development coach).
  • T.J. Sorrentine, a longtime assistant coach at Brown University.
  • Alexis Ajinca, a seven-year NBA veteran who also played professionally in France and transitioned into coaching in 2023 as an assistant for the Capital City Go-Go, Washington’s G League affiliate.

Joseph Blair, James Posey, and Mike Miller (the former Knicks coach, not the former Heat champion) are among the notable assistants who were let go by the Wizards when the club cleaned house back in April.

Southeast Notes: KCP, Fultz, Okeke, Ware, Highsmith, McGowens, Wizards

The Magic‘s promising future played an important role in Kentavious Caldwell-Pope‘s decision to join the team in free agency, tweets Jason Beede of The Orlando Sentinel. Caldwell-Pope won titles with the Nuggets in 2023 and the Lakers in 2020, and he likes his chances to pick up a third ring in Orlando.

“I’m always chasing the championship,” Caldwell-Pope said. “… Seeing their progress, they just made it to the playoffs, taking Cleveland to a Game 7. That was enough for me. They got a little bit of a taste of that pressure and what it takes to make it past the first round. I’m just excited to be a part of it.”

Caldwell-Pope will become a veteran leader on a team that has amassed an impressive collection of young talent over the last few drafts. He’s looking forward to playing alongside Paolo Banchero, who became an All-Star in his second NBA season.

“His knowledge of the game,” Caldwell-Pope responded when asked what stands out about Banchero. “Him being patient in certain situations, making plays for his teammates to get his teammates involved. Being so much of a little bit of a leader that I’ve seen from him.”

There’s more from the Southeast Division:

  • The Magic renounced their free agent rights to Markelle Fultz and Chuma Okeke to clear up cap room for other moves, according to Keith Smith of Spotrac (Twitter link). Both players are still eligible to sign new contracts with Orlando.
  • The Heat want rookie center Kel’el Ware to gain weight before the start of the season, per Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald (Twitter link). The first-round pick weighed in at 230 pounds when he arrived at Summer League camp, and he said the team would prefer him to be between 240 and 245.
  • Free agent forward Haywood Highsmith still has interest in returning to the Heat, according to Anthony Chiang of The Miami Herald. The Sixers were considered a potential landing spot for Highsmith, Chiang adds, but that seems less likely after Philadelphia signed Caleb Martin.
  • Bryce McGowens, who was waived earlier today, will continue to be part of the Hornets‘ Summer League team, tweets Rod Boone of The Charlotte Observer.
  • Brown University assistant coach T.J. Sorrentine was thrilled to get the chance to join Brian Keefe‘s staff with the Wizards, relays Bill Koch of The Providence Journal. “My family was happy. I was in a great spot,” Sorrentine said. “But going through a day with coach Keefe and meeting with people, I left here and I called my wife (Emily) and I was like, ‘Man, it’s going to be really hard to come back to college.’  This was a unique opportunity. That’s when I knew it was time to go. I was ready. I’m going to take full advantage of this opportunity.” Adam Caporn, director of development with the Nets’ coaching staff, has also accepted a job with Washington, according to NetsDaily (Twitter link). Caporn’s hiring had been anticipated.