British Basketball has today officially announced Joe Prunty as the new Great Britain Senior Men’s Head Coach.
The news comes as no surprise after first being reported by MVP magazine in March.
Prunty has been an NBA assistant coach for 17 years, most recently with the Cleveland Cavaliers, where he was released after the firing of head coach Byron Scott in April.
“It is truly an honour to be appointed as Head Coach of the Great Britain Men’s National Team,” commented Prunty. “Every person I have spoken with has shown tremendous passion and enthusiasm for the programme. This is an important time for GB Basketball and the opportunity for all of us is extremely exciting heading into EuroBasket 2013.
“I am grateful to all the people involved who have entrusted me with this position. I am looking forward to working with the players, coaches, and staff members who comprise the GB family.”
Despite having an extensive background as an NBA assistant, Prunty’s only head coaching experience with professionals has been in NBA summer leagues, and he has little international experience. He has worked at NBA Basketball Without Borders camps in Turkey, development camps in Indonesia and NBA Fit Camps in China, but has no experience of high level European competition.
It is understood Prunty has began contacting players, and held an informal meet and greet in London last week which was poorly attended due to many players still being out of the country. Additionally, MVP is reporting both Ben Gordon and Byron Mullens, no-shows for last year’s Olympic team, are once again being recruited by Prunty and British Basketball.
Along with the announcement of Prunty, British Basketball has recruited Performance Psychologist, Bill Beswick, for the first time to work with the senior men across their summer campaign. Beswick has worked in a similar role for England Rugby, the England football team and high profile sides including Manchester United Football Club. Beswick has also previously been head coach to the England men’s team.
Calvin Morris has been appointed as the Strength and Conditioning Coach following his work at England Rugby and with the UK Athletics programme and their Olympic athletes. Mark Gillett returns to his post as Head of Science and Medicine while Fraser McKinney also comes back to the team as Physiotherapist.
Following his work with the GB under-20 side, Mark Lloyd will take up the position of Team Manager for the senior men’s side.
“We are aiming for a first class programme which enables players to perform at their very best,” said
British Basketball’s National Teams Director, Warwick Cann. “Recruitment of good staff has been central to what we are building.”
It remains unclear who will be on the bench alongside Prunty as his assistant(s).
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