Gregg Popovich’s main task at hand right now is trying to navigate what will be a tricky season for his San Antonio Spurs. Not only did they swing a blockbuster trade in the summer that sent out Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green in exchange for DeMar DeRozan and Jakob Poeltl, but he’s just lost two key backcourt pieces to serious knee injuries. Lonnie Walker IV should be back in a couple of months, but starting point guard Dejounte Murray is with a torn ACL.
But while the Spurs are his first priority, Popovich does have another job — head coach of Team USA. The legendary coach took over the national team program from Mike Krzyzewski after the 2016 Olympics, and will soon oversee his first major tournament in charge.
Ahead of potentially the 2019 FIBA World Cup and 2020 Olympics — Team USA still has to qualify for both events — Popovich has added three key members to his coaching staff. Warriors head coach Steve Kerr, Pacers head coach Nate McMillan and Villanova head coach Jay Wright will join Popovich on the bench in the coming years. Via USA Basketball:
The USA Basketball Men’s National Team coaching staff today was finalized with the announcement that NBA head coaches Steve Kerr (Golden State Warriors) and Nate McMillan and Villanova University head coach Jay Wright have been selected as assistant coaches for the 2019-20 USA Basketball Men’s National Team.
Kerr, McMillan and Wright join USA and San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich to complete USA National Team coaching staff. The coaches will lead the USA National Team in 2019-20, which, if the USA qualifies, could include the 2019 FIBA World Cup in China (Aug. 31-Sept. 15, 2019) and the 2020 Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan (July 24-Aug. 9).
While they will be blessed with the most talented roster in the world, Popovich and Co. will have plenty of pressure to continue the country’s incredible run of success. Currently on a 76-game winning streak, Team USA has won the last three Olympic gold medals, as well as the past two FIBA World Cups.
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