The Washington Wizards announced today that Scott Brooks has been hired as the team’s new head coach. Brooks will become the 24th head coach in franchise history.
“I am beyond thrilled to return to coaching with a team that is filled with such potential and to be able to join an organization that is committed to helping us reach our goals,” said Brooks. “I’m very grateful to Ted Leonsis and Ernie Grunfeld for this opportunity and I can promise the great fans of Washington that we will work extremely hard both on and off the court to represent them in a manner fitting the most powerful city in the world.”
Brooks joins the Wizards after serving as the Oklahoma City Thunder’s head coach for seven seasons (2008-09 through 2014-15). With Brooks at the helm, the Thunder amassed a 338-207 (.620) record, tallied four 50-plus win seasons (including 60 wins in 2012-13), made three appearances in the Western Conference Finals (2011, 2012, 2014), and advanced to the 2012 NBA Finals.
“Scott was our top candidate and we moved quickly on an agreement to make him our head coach,” said President Ernie Grunfeld. “His presence, the core players we have returning and our cap flexibility this summer have us all looking forward to the possibilities of what our team can accomplish.”
Brooks was named the 2009-10 NBA Coach of the Year after guiding OKC to a 50-32 record in his first full season as head coach and leading the team to a 27-win improvement (tied for the eighth-largest in NBA history). He also was twice named as head coach for the Western Conference All-Star Team (2012 and 2014).
Just as in OKC, Brooks will inherit some talent, starting with star point guard John Wall.
Before joining the Thunder (then Seattle Supersonics) organization as an assistant prior to the 2007-08 season, Brooks spent the 2006-07 season working as an assistant coach with the Sacramento Kings. His NBA coaching career began with the Denver Nuggets, where he served as an assistant coach from 2003-06.
In 2000, Brooks was a player/assistant coach with the Los Angeles Stars of the ABA. The following season, he served as the head coach of the Southern California Surf of the ABA, guiding the club to a 23-14 record.
Brooks played 10 seasons in the NBA, appearing in 680 regular season games with Philadelphia, Minnesota, Houston, Dallas, New York and Cleveland. He won an NBA championship in 1994 as a member of the Houston Rockets. The 5-11 guard retired with career averages of 4.9 points and 2.4 assists.
By Staff of TheDailySportsHerald.com and news services