Hawks add former NBA goalie Nick Van Exel to coaching staff
The Atlanta Hawks add a former NBA All-Star to their coaching staff. ESPN senior NBA insider Adrian Wojnarowski says, the Hawks hire Nick Van Exel as an assistant coach. Van Exel is set to replace Marlon Garnett, who recently accepted a position with the Charlotte Hornets, by Wojnarowski.
Van Exel recently worked as a scout for the Dallas Mavericks. He previously worked as an assistant coach with the Memphis Grizzlies (2016-19) and Milwaukee Bucks (2013-14), as well as as the head coach of the Texas Legends in the NBA D-League (2015-16).
Van Exel played 14 seasons in the NBA from 1993 to 2006, making saves with the Los Angeles Lakers, Denver Nuggets, Dallas Mavericks, Golden State Warriors, Portland Blazers and San Antonio Spurs. He finished his career averaging 14.4 points on 40.5 / 79.4 / 35.7 points shooting, with 2.9 rebounds and 6.6 assists.
Van Exel was named to the NBA rookie squad in 1993, averaging 13.6 points, 5.8 assists, 2.9 rebounds and 1.0 steals per game in his freshman year. His only All-Star nomination came in the 1997-98 season with the Lakers, in which he started 46 of 64 games and registered 13.8 points, 3.0 boards, 6.9 cents and 1.0 flight every 32.1 minutes.
After his playing career, Van Exel moved into the coaching ranks. He started as an assistant coach at Texas Southern University, before joining the Hawks in 2010 as a player development instructor. Van Exel remained in that position until 2013, when he joined the Bucks as an assistant coach.
Atlanta finished the 2020-21 season with the fifth best record in the East at 41-31 and reached the conference finals for the first time since the 2014-15 campaign.
In August, the Hawks signed the star point guard Young Traé to a maximum five-year extension for designated recruits of $ 207 million. The 22-year-old has just completed an incredible playoff series in which he averaged 28.8 points, 9.5 assists, 2.8 rebounds and 1.3 steals in 37.7 minutes per game in 16 appearances.
Last season, Young averaged 25.3 points, 9.4 assists and 3.9 rebounds per game. The previous session, he won his first All-Star appearance while scoring a career-high 29.6 points per game, with 9.3 assists and 4.3 rebounds. In his first three seasons, the former No. 5 overall pick had 24.1 points, 8.9 assists and 3.9 rebounds per game.