- The Washington Times - Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Almost 10 years after Sidney Lowe recruited John Wall, he’ll finally get a chance to coach the Washington Wizards‘ all-star point guard.

“I don’t give him any grief for not coming right around the corner,” said Lowe, who coached at North Carolina State — a short drive from where Wall went to high school in Raleigh — from 2006-11.

“When he made the decision (to go to Kentucky), I told him, ‘You’re going to be the first pick whether you come to us or go somewhere else.’”

Lowe will work primarily with the point guards on first-year coach Scott Brooks’ staff, which was finalized on Tuesday. Brooks kept just one assistant — David Adkins, who will remain the director of player development — from former coach Randy Wittman’s staff.

Brooks will be joined by assistant coaches who have played in the league, been head coaches in the past, and also have a scouting background. Working under Brooks as his top assistant will be Tony Brown, who played seven seasons in the NBA and has been an assistant with Dallas, the Los Angeles Clippers, Milwaukee, Boston, Toronto, Detroit and Portland. The last two seasons, Brown was the top assistant for coach Lionel Hollins in Brooklyn. When Hollins was fired in January, Brown replaced him on an interim basis.

Before Lowe will get the chance to work with Wall, he’ll be coaching the Wizards‘ summer league team, which began practicing on Tuesday.

“You want to see them play hard, execute what coach [Brooks] wants them to execute and play together,” Lowe said. “And put winning first. That’s a tough thing when they’re playing in the summer league because guys are trying to get a job. When you see guys able to put individual goals aside and play for the sake of the team in a summer league, those are guys you want on your team.”

Lowe, a former DeMatha High School star, worked for the Minnesota Timberwolves the last two seasons. Between the NBA and NCAA, he has spent eight years as a head coach and 12 years as an assistant coach. From 1983-90, Lowe played 193 games in the NBA before retiring in 1991.

“I respect Scotty so much,” Lowe said. “I call him coach and he goes, ‘You know, you’re older than me.’ We were teammates at one point, I knew him for years. I just respect his teams he’s coached, the ways he works with players. He’s one of the best at his demeanor, with no ego, he has the ability to really communicate with his players and get them to play hard and play for him and that’s an asset for a coach.”

Chad Iske was the associate head coach for the Sacramento Kings last season. Prior, he was an assistant for the Philadelphia 76ers. Iske has spent the majority of his NBA service in a scouting role. For 14 seasons, he worked in the Denver Nuggets organization in a variety of scouting positions, including the team’s scouting coordinator.

Mike Terpstra joins the team from Boise State, where he landed after working as an assistant coach for Brooks when both were with the Oklahoma City Thunder. Maz Trakh was the west coast advance scout for the Golden State Warriors last season and was also an assistant coach with the Thunder when Brooks was there.

Eric Sebastian has been named director of coaching operations and Kamran Sufi takes the role of advance scout. Sebastian was the director of basketball operations at the University of Memphis the last seven seasons. Sufi was a regional advance scout for the Warriors last season. He worked for the Thunder as an advanced scout during the 2013-14 season.

Retaining Adkins is intriguing. He was an assistant coach at Montrose Christian when Kevin Durant played there, and when he was hired two years ago, many viewed the move as another attempt to influence Durant’s decision once he hit free agency on July 1. Durant never granted the Wizards the opportunity to speak with him and chose to leave Oklahoma City for Golden State. Yet, Adkins has been retained. The Wizards view him as a key to helping develop young talent.

Oubre to head summer league team

The Wizards held their first Summer League practice on Tuesday at the Verizon Center. Last year’s first-round draft pick, small forward Kelly Oubre Jr., will return to Las Vegas Summer League before starting his second season with the Wizards.

Guard Jarell Eddie, who played 26 games last season with the Wizards for his first NBA work, is also on the roster. The 24-year-old shooter will likely hold one of the Wizards‘ back-end roster spots.

Other intriguing names on Washington’s Summer League team include guard Sheldon McClellan who played for Miami and was signed by the Wizards as an undrafted free agent. Guard/forward Danuel House was also signed as an undrafted free agent and is part of the team.

Former Arizona center Kaleb Tarczewski will join the team in Las Vegas.

Smith added to bolster frontcourt depth

Three days after signing 6-foot-11 center Ian Mahinmi, the Wizards continued to add to their frontcourt by inking 7-foot center Jason Smith to a three-year deal on Tuesday, according to multiple reports. Smith, 30, played in 76 games for the Orlando Magic last season and averaged 7.2 points and 2.9 rebounds per game. A nine-year veteran, Smith has played for Philadelphia, New Orleans and New York.

Anthony Gulizia contributed to this story.

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times welcomes your comments on Spot.im, our third-party provider. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide