This past week, the San Antonio Spurs captured the 2015 Las Vegas Summer League Championship, defeating the Phoenix Suns 93-90. Seeing the Spurs win the summer league title was not that surprising, since the organization seems to have mastered the skill of developing young basketball players. However, what was surprising to see was the person at the helm coaching during the summer league: none other than Becky Hammond – yes, a woman.
She made headlines last year by becoming the first female assistant to coach in the NBA. Now she’s back again, wreaking havoc as the first female head coach in the NBA Summer League. It just so happens that she won in the process as well.
Let’s take into consideration that this was the summer league and not the regular season or playoffs throughout the year. If this had occurred then, it might be a different story. But it is still quite an accomplishment, nonetheless.
We must also look at the fact that the talent level during the summer league doesn’t even come close to the regular season of the NBA. The sloppy play of the summer league unfortunately highlights the high turnover-assist ratio. Let’s not also disrespect the summer league players, since they are doing everything in their power to officially make the NBA roster – including turning the ball over more often than not while trying tirelessly to make plays managers and executives will notice.
Now, Hammond shouldn’t just be praised for being a remarkable coach and bringing out the winning attitude or mentality towards her players, because she is not the only one. Her presence coaching just allows for a breach of opening the door for more women to lead men in professional sports.
To many, it is troubling for a woman to lead men in a sports environment. Especially, when men are in position to take scrutiny and directives from a woman. But, when the role is reversed, it is completely acceptable and deemed proper for a male to coach women. So, is it unsuitable for it to be the other way around?
Hammond is now on pace to be the first female NBA head coach, depending on if she is interested.
The whole NBA is on pace to sign coaches who are under the tutelage of the Spurs organization. Even active coaches in the NBA right now, at least one-fourth of the NBA coaches, have being under the wing of Gregg Poppavich.
It seems as if it is politically correct for men to coach women, but it’s unfathomable for women to coach men, professionally. I may not be a painter, but there’s something wrong with that picture.
Change doesn’t have to take place suddenly. It may have to be in increments. This could be the start of the first wave of female coaches in men’s professional basketball. Sooner or later, someone will ask the question, “Why not hire Hammon?”
She is an assistant coach of the San Antonio Spurs, which is a blooming coaching environment, where current coaching prodigies have sprouted from. Gregg Popovich did not hire her last season to only be a long-term assistant coach in the NBA.
We don’t know her aspirations yet, but we surely see Hammon’s potential as a head coach in the NBA. She should not be rushed or pressured into becoming a head coach, but she is primed for the job in due time. We should all appreciate what she is doing right now for aspiring women to coach.
The next argument may not be about who’s coaching, bus instead the disparity of par between female and male coaches. Only time will tell.