The Washington Wizards announced four new hires for Scott Brooks’ coaching staff, including Dean Oliver, an analytics expert who has front office experience but is new to the coaching ranks.
Oliver’s last NBA job was the director of analytics and player personnel for the Sacramento Kings in 2015. He has also held front office jobs with the Denver Nuggets and Seattle SuperSonics and wrote the book “Basketball on Paper,” which he promotes as the basketball equivalent of “Moneyball.”
A statistician, Oliver invented the “offensive efficiency rating” and “defensive efficiency rating” that are now widely used and referred to on websites like Basketball Reference. He also helped ESPN begin its sports analytics group in 2011, according to the Wizards’ press release.
Oliver played basketball at Division III Caltech before graduating there in 1990. But he has not held a pure coaching job at any level before.
“Dean will combine his unparalleled knowledge and application of analytics to our on-court work,” Brooks said as part of a longer statement on the Wizards’ four hires.
Jarell Christian, who served as the head coach of the Capital City Go-Go in the team’s inaugural G League season, was named an assistant coach for the Wizards. Ryan Richman was promoted to Go-Go head coach in his place.
The Wizards also hired Mike Longabardi and Corey Gaines.
“Coach Brooks and I worked closely to pinpoint what areas we needed to improve and identify the best candidates, both internally and externally, to make the appropriate changes,” general manager Tommy Sheppard said in a statement. “We’re very confident that we have a strong staff in place that is in line with the vision we have for our rebuilding our culture and focusing on the overall development of our players.”