Phoenix Mercury head coach Corey Gaines will make his first appearance on the USA Basketball Women's National Team staff as a court coach during the team's training camp that will be held May 10-12, 2011 in Las Vegas, Nev.
“I am honored to be invited to work with USA Basketball and am looking forward to the opportunity to learn from one of the best coaches in the business,” said USA Basketball newcomer Gaines, who led the Mercury to the 2009 WNBA crown. “It will be a great learning experience for me.”
Entering his fourth season as head coach for the Phoenix Mercury, Gaines, who just completed his first season as a player development coach for the NBA Phoenix Suns, comes to the USA Basketball sideline after leading the Mercury to a 54-48 record (.529) over the last three seasons and the 2009 WNBA title.
In addition to the WNBA crown, Gaines guided the Mercury to the 2010 Western Conference Finals.
Prior to taking over the team, Gaines was a two-year (2006 and 2007) assistant under Paul Westhead and assisted the Mercury to the 2007 WNBA championship. The Mercury in those two years posted a combined 41-27 mark, including a 23-11 slate in 2007 to finish atop the Western Conference standings.
A 17-year professional veteran, Gaines spent five years in the NBA playing for Denver, New Jersey, New York and Philadelphia and advanced to the 1994 NBA Finals with the Knicks. He also spent 12 years competing internationally in Europe and Japan. While in Europe he helped Scavolini Basket advance to the 1995 European Championship quarterfinals and led all competitors for assists (5.8 apg.) in the 1999 Saporta Cup.
Gaines competed three years (1983-84 through 1985-86) for UCLA, where he played alongside Reggie Miller as the Bruins posted a combined 53-37 mark and captured the 1985 NIT championship. Gaines owns three-year averages at UCLA of 4.3 ppg. and 2.0 apg.
Gaines transferred to Loyola Marymount University for his final season, where he earned 1988 All-West Coast Conference first team honors while playing for Westhead. Playing alongside Hank Gathers and Bo Kimble, Gaines started all 31 games and averaged 17.4 ppg. and 8.7 apg. as LMU went undefeated in West Coast Conference play, earned the WCC Tournament crown and advanced to the NCAA Tournament second round.