The WNBA Star Wants to Stick With The Game for Life
After Becky Hammon suffered a season ending knee-injury last summer -- which kept her from playing for a 15th season in the WNBA, she was invited by Spurs head coach Greg Popovich to attend practices.
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”She wants to coach after she’s done,” Popovich said. ”Because she’s not just a good player but a smart player, a great person in our community, just somebody that we all respect so much, we gave her the opportunity to sit with us during the year. She came to our coaches’ meetings, argued with us. She did everything. She’s been wonderful.”
Hammon has been sitting in on coaches meetings, attending home games, and going to film sessions, according to Fox Sports.
''There's a standard that he puts on them every day,'' Hammon said. ''You're expected to meet that standard and play to that standard. It doesn't matter if you're up 20 or it's a one-point game. It's kind of a beautiful thing to watch.''
Popovich, who has won four NBA titles as head coach of the Spurs, has his team in the playoffs as a first overall seed. Popavich said that he believes Hammon and other women can cross over to coach men's teams, even in the NBA.
''I don't see why not. There shouldn't be any limitations,'' Popovich said. ''It's about talent and the ability to do things. It's not about what your sex is or your race or anything else.''
Hammon calls Popovich a ''good communicator'' that has a ''brilliant mind'' and has the ability and know how to reach the players.
''Just listening and observing you can learn a lot,'' she said. ''How he manages players, how he manages the team and minutes. How he leads - a tremendous leader - but also X's and O's-wise."
''The Spurs, people think they're boring, I think they're amazing to watch. The way they move the ball, pass, cut, that's really how basketball is supposed to be played.''
Hammon will be starting her 16th season in the WBA this summer. The 37-year old athlete is currently 2nd in the WNBA in 3-point shots and assists. Training camp started for the Stars' player, and she can see herself coaching for a long time if this is to be her final season as a player.
''Becky's a basketball lifer,'' Popovich said. ''I have a feeling, even at her young age. You can see it. She wants to keep learning.''