KC Johnson: Suns coach Monty Williams served as Billy Donovan’s lead assistant during his first season in OKC. Donovan: “I love Monty. He’s a great friend to this day. Monty was a guy who took unbelievable care of me, really helped me. I really enjoyed our time together.”
April 12, 2021 | 8:49 am EDT Update
Former UConn Huskies coach and 13-year NBA veteran Kevin Ollie has been hired as head coach and director of player development for the Overtime Elite, a new professional basketball league for top prospects between 16 and 18 years old, sources told ESPN. A formal announcement is expected on Monday morning.
Overtime Elite, which will feature up to 30 players ages 16 to 18 who will be paid a minimum salary of $100,000 along with bonuses and equity, is slated to begin in September 2021. If an Overtime Elite player doesn’t ultimately pursue a pro career, the league will pay them up to $100,000 towards college tuition. Overtime, which includes Durant, Carmelo Anthony and late NBA Commissioner David Stern among its investors, was founded in 2016. Ollie, who is still in arbitration with UConn over the $10 million he was still owed on his contract and isn’t permitted to discuss his exit from the program as a result, wrote an Op-Ed for The Athletic about his return to the basketball world.
OTE is designed to offer the world’s top prospects the development, education and economic empowerment to address these issues head-on. On the court, OTE players will compete against the top prospects from around the world. They will have access to pro-grade training and coaching to level-up their game, and to world-class facilities, nutritionists and sports scientists who can hone their bodies. Players will also earn six-figure salaries and have the opportunity to be compensated for their name, image and likeness. They will earn a high school diploma and receive professional training in financial literacy, social media, media training and the business of basketball. I had to learn all of this on my own when I entered the NBA.
April 12, 2021 | 8:19 am EDT Update
Ohm Youngmisuk: Paul George says his toe and mental game is in a good place. “I just got into a good groove, rhythm, physical, mental space. I know what I need to do… I’ve been locked in and focused… I’ve just been at peace, I’m loving and enjoying the game. And the team is coming together.”
At 33, Curry is in the midst of the type of special relationship with one team and one region that few of today’s players can match. As Curry now sits 18 points behind Chamberlain ahead of tonight’s matchup with the Denver Nuggets (10 p.m. ET on ESPN), we caught up with three all-time greats from three different eras, who all understand the responsibility that comes with being the face of an organization for an entire career: Dirk Nowitzki, Reggie Miller and Jerry West. Passing Chamberlain will only solidify what the organization has known for years. “Look,” Miller said of Curry. “He is Mr. Warrior. He’s Mr. Warrior.”