Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James had nothing but praise for San Antonio Spurs assistant Becky Hammon, as she became the first woman to serve as a head coach for an NBA team after Gregg Popovich was ejected last night.
“It’s a beautiful thing just to hear her barking out calls, barking out sets… She’s very passionate about the game. So congrats to her, congrats to our league,” said the Lakers forward, via Victor Mather of the New York Times.
Hammon will go down in history for being the first woman to be a head coach and her legacy will continue to inspire women to pursue their dreams of coaching in the NBA. In fact, after she was hired as an assistant coach of the San Antonio Spurs in 2014, many other teams followed suit. As of right now, 10 women, including Hammon, are assistant coaches on NBA teams.
Hammon was given the head coach designation after Popovich was ejected in the game against the Lakers after arguing a no-call against DeMar DeRozan. When heading back to the locker room, Popovich knew Hammon was the right person for the job. Dave McMenamin of ESPN tweeted what had to say to Hammon before leaving the game.
Hammon said she found out she was taking over for Popovich after he was ejected when, “he pointed at me and said, ‘You got it.’” https://t.co/gdKNOz52Wr
— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) December 31, 2020
It's no question that Hammon's passion for the game will continue to inspire young women around the world to follow their dreams. She has won the hearts of players throughout the NBA, especially players in the Spurs organization.
DeRozan reflected on his experience with Hammon as head coach, per Tom Orsborn of the San Antonio Express-News, saying “She's one of us. When she speaks, we are all ears. It's great having her.”