The Westchester Knicks, the official NBA G League affiliate of the New York Knicks, and first-year head coach Derrick Alston, announced the hiring of Lisa C. Willis as an assistant coach. Willis becomes the first female coach in the NY Knicks organization.
“The Westchester Knicks continue to be a vital part of our player development program at the New York Knicks,” said Steve Mills, President, New York Knicks. “Today, we’ve added a talented coach who will improve our players’ skills both on and off the court.”
Willis comes to the Knicks following the completion of the NBA’s Assistant Coaches Program (ACP), a program formed by the NBA G League’s Player Development department, providing an educational conduit for former NBA, WNBA and NBA G League players to coaching and front office opportunities. Current Westchester assistant, Keith Bogans, is also a product of this initiative.
A former fifth overall pick in the 2006 WNBA Draft, Willis played her first two seasons with the Los Angeles Sparks before spending time with the New York Liberty (2007-08). At UCLA (2002-06), the Long Beach, Calif. native was recognized as the nation’s best defender by ESPN’s Nancy Lieberman. She later graduated as the Bruins’ all-time three-point leader and second all-time in then-PAC-10 history and ranked ninth all-time in scoring.
“I am very excited to welcome Lisa to our Westchester Knicks family,” head coach Derrick Alston began. “Lisa has had the benefit of playing professionally and winning at the highest levels. Given Lisa’s acumen for the game, there is no doubt in my mind that her transition to the sideline will be seamless.”
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