Five NBA Coaches And Two Athletic Trainers Named To Staff For 2009 USA Basketball Men's National Team Program Mini-Camp
May 21, 2009 - Colorado Springs, Colo.
Enlisting the coaching expertise of Toronto Raptors head coach Jay Triano, and NBA assistants Tyrone Corbin (Utah Jazz), Dave Cowens (Detroit Pistons), Kenny Gattison (New Orleans Hornets) and Jerry Sichting (Minnesota Timberwolves), USA Basketball announced today that the five NBA coaches had been selected to comprise the staff for the 2009 USA Basketball Men's National Team Program mini-camp that will be conducted July 22-25 in Las Vegas. Additionally, NBA athletic trainers Gregg Farnam (Minnesota Timberwolves) and Joe Sharpe (Oklahoma City Thunder) were named athletic trainers for the camp.
The selections were announced by USA Basketball Chairman Jerry Colangelo. Players selected to participate in the mini-camp will be announced at a later date.
The July USA Basketball Men's National Team Program mini-camp will include a team meeting July 22, practice sessions on July 23 and July 24, and the camp will be capped by a Blue-White intra-squad game on Saturday, July 25, at UNLV's Thomas & Mack Center. Game time and ticket information will be announced at a later date
-We've assembled an excellent staff for the mini-camp. Jay Triano, who was an instrumental part of our preparations the previous two summers, will direct the mini-camp staff and Tyrone, Dave, Kenny and Jerry will assist Jay," said Colangelo, who also served as Managing Director of the 2005-08 USA Basketball Men's National Team program.
'This mini-camp is the first step in our preparations for the 2010-2012 competitions that the USA Basketball National Team will be involved in. Last quad we established a USA National Team program that was historic, the first of its kind for the United States men. We're now looking to continue to build on the successes that program achieved and to continue to get better. The mini-camp will be utilized to identify possible players for future national team competitions," Colangelo added.
USA Basketball initiated its historic men's national team program in 2005 and capped the 2005-2008 quad competitions with a marvelous gold medal run at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
USA Basketball's National Team program during the three-year period between 2006 and 2008 compiled a striking 36-1 overall win-loss record and just as importantly reestablished the USA team and its members as positive ambassadors for the United States and the sport.
The USA squad culminated the quadrennium by finishing 8-0 to reclaim the gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the USA's first gold in a major international competition since 2000. The USA National Team also won gold at the 2007 FIBA Americas Championship with a 10-0 record to qualify the U.S. men for the 2008 Olympic Games. In the program's first year, the U.S. captured the bronze medal with an 8-1 record at the 2006 FIBA World Championship in Japan.
Over the course of the next four summers, USA Basketball Men's National Team will compete in the 2010 FIBA World Championship (Aug. 28-Sept. 12 in Turkey); if necessary the 2011 FIBA Americas Olympic Qualifying Tournament (dates and site TBD); and if the USA qualifies, the 2012 Summer Olympic Games (July 26-Aug. 12 in London, England).
In his seventh season as a member of the Toronto Raptors' coaching staff, Triano was named interim head coach on Dec. 3, 2008, and was signed to a three-year contract on May 11, 2009, to coach the Toronto Raptors. He became the first Canadian born and Canadian trained coach in the NBA when he served as an assistant coach to Lenny Wilkens during the 2002-03 season.
Toronto compiled a 25-40 record under Triano in 2008-09 and finished strong, winning nine of their final 13 games.
A native of Niagara Falls, Triano was the head coach of the Canadian men's national team from 1998-2004 posting a 52-42 (.553) record. He led Canada to a semifinal berth in the 2003 FIBA Americas Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Puerto Rico and to a 5-2 record, second best to the United States, in the 2000 Olympics. He has also served as an assistant coach of the USA Basketball Select Team in 2007 and 2008, was head coach of the Nike Skills Academy in Vancouver (2006) and Toronto (2007), and for the past six years served as a coach at the prestigious Euro Camp in Treviso, Italy.
Triano began his coaching career in 1985 as an assistant at his alma mater Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, British Columbia. He took over the school's head coaching duties in 1988 and served in that capacity until 1995. In 1992-93, he also worked as an assistant coach on the Canadian men's national team and in 1993-94 he was the head coach of the Canadian men's junior national team.
During his collegiate playing career at Simon Fraser, Triano led his teams in scoring all four seasons and set 11 school records, including the career scoring mark of 2,616 points. He was also a member of the football team during his senior season. In 1981, he was drafted by the Los Angeles Lakers in the eighth round of the NBA Draft and by the Calgary Stampeders in the sixth round in the CFL Draft.
Following graduation, Triano played for the Canadian national team for 11 years (1978-88) and was team captain from 1981-88. He represented Canada as a player on three Olympic teams (1980, 1984 and 1988), serving as captain for the last two.
Triano also wore his country's colors internationally in the World University Games in 1979, 1981 and 1983 where he led the tournament in scoring and Canada to the gold medal, and in 1985 in Kobe, Japan where he carried the Canadian flag at the opening ceremonies.
Triano is a member of the Canadian Basketball, Canadian Olympic, Basketball British Columbia, Basketball Ontario, Simon Fraser Athletic and Niagara Falls Halls of Fame.
In April 2005, Triano was honored by the Raptors with the Coach Mac Award, given annually to a member of the Canadian basketball community who through exemplary character and effort, has made a major contribution to the sport of basketball while upholding the principles for which Coach Mac stood " honesty, integrity, competitiveness and a love of the game.
Corbin completed in 2008-09 his fifth season as an assistant coach with the Utah Jazz. He has also shared coaching duties with assistant coach Scott Layden during the 2005-08 Rocky Mountain Revues.
He joined the Jazz after spending the 2003-04 season as manager of player development for the New York Knicks. Prior to his stint with the Knicks, he spent two seasons as a player mentor for the North Charleston Lowgators of the NBA Development League.
A versatile small forward, Corbin played for nine teams during a 16-year NBA career (1985-01), including three seasons with the Jazz from 1991-94, where he averaged 9.6 points and 6.2 rebounds in 233 games. Corbin appeared in a total of 1,050 games over the course of his career that included stints with San Antonio, Cleveland, Phoenix, Minnesota, Utah, Atlanta, Sacramento, Miami and Toronto.
Originally drafted by San Antonio in the second round (35th pick overall) of the 1985 NBA Draft, Corbin averaged 9.3 ppg. and 4.8 rpg., while connecting on 45.7 percent of his shots in 26.2 minutes per game for his career. He also appeared in 82 career playoff games and averaged 8.4 ppg. and 5.0 rpg.
Playing under legendary DePaul University coach Ray Meyer, Corbin averaged 11.5 ppg. during his four year career, including 15.8 ppg. his senior season. He played in 120 games for the Blue Demons and increased his scoring average and field goal and free throw percentage in each of his four seasons. He finished ranked seventh on DePaul's career scoring list and was a two-time honorable mention Associated Press All-America selection, as well as an All-NIT choice in 1983, and he participated in the 1984 U.S. Olympic Basketball Team Trials.
A Hall of Famer and one of the NBA's 50 Greatest Players of All-Time, Cowens completed his third season with the Detroit Pistons as an assistant coach in 2008-09. Prior to joining the Pistons he served as head coach and general manager for the expansion Chicago Sky in the WNBA in 2006.
Cowens coaching experience also includes six years as an NBA head coach. He served as a player/coach for the 1978-79 Boston Celtics and re-joined the NBA coaching ranks in 1997 with the Charlotte Hornets. Cowens led Charlotte to their only back-to-back 50-win seasons in his first two seasons and posted a 109-70 (.609) record with the Hornets from 1997-99. He was head coach of the Golden State Warriors for two seasons (2001-03). Overall, he has posted a 161-191 (.457) coaching record.
Selected by the Boston Celtics in the first round of the 1970 NBA Draft (fourth overall), Cowens enjoyed a prolific 11-year NBA playing career, including 10 seasons with Boston. The 6-9 center became the 14th player in Celtics franchise history to have his jersey (#18) retired on Feb 8, 1981. He earned NBA Co-Rookie of the Year honors in 1970-71 and the league's Most Valuable Player award in 1972-73 after averaging career highs in both scoring (20.5 ppg.) and rebounding (16.2 rpg.).
Cowens averaged a double-double (points/rebounds) in each of his first eight NBA seasons, including his rookie campaign in 1970-71 (17.0 ppg. and 15.0 rpg.). He was a member of two NBA Championship teams with the Celtics (1974 and 1976), earned All-NBA Second Team honors three times (1973, 1975, 1976), NBA All-Defensive First Team honors once (1976), NBA All-Defensive Second Team honors twice (1975, 1980) and ranked among the league's top 10 leaders in rebounding seven times. Furthermore, he was a member of the Eastern Conference All-Star team on six occasions, highlighted by the 1973 classic in Chicago, when he earned MVP honors (15 points and 13 rebounds).
A Kentucky native, Cowens attended Florida State University where he averaged a career double-double of 18.9 ppg. and 17.2 rpg. during his 78 game career between 1968-70. He still holds FSU records for most rebounds in a season (456 in 1968), rebounds in a career (1360), and lists second for most rebounds in a game (31).
Gattison completed in 2008-09 his sixth season on the Hornets bench. He re-joined the Hornets organization in 2003-04 as an assistant coach after playing six seasons for the team from 1989 to 1995.
Since retiring from the NBA as a player following the 1995-96 season, Gattison has built an impressive resume as a coach. He spent the 2001-02 and 2002-03 seasons as an assistant under Blaine Taylor at his alma mater of Old Dominion University and was also on the New Jersey Nets' bench as an assistant coach under John Calipari from 1996-98. In addition, Gattison has served as head coach for the Hornets' entry in the Vegas Summer League for the past three seasons
Gattison boasts of prior USA Basketball experience having been selected for three USA teams. A member of the 1985 USA R. William Jones Cup Team that finished 8-1 to claim the silver medal, Gattison also played on the 1983 USA Junior World Championship Team that won gold and was a member of the 1983 U.S. Olympic Festival East Team that captured the silver medal.
Gattison enjoyed a nine-year career in the NBA and finished with career averages of 4.7 ppg. and 7.9 rpg. with a 52.0 (1536-2956) career field goal percentage in 494 games. He began his career in Phoenix after being drafted by the Suns in the third round (55th pick overall) of the 1986 NBA Draft. Averaging 5.2 ppg. and 3.5 rpg. in 77 games as a rookie in 1986-87, Gattison tore the ACL in his left knee and missed the 1987-88 season. He played just two games for the Suns in 1988-89 before signing in Europe. The Hornets signed the 6-8 Gattison as a free agent on Dec. 2, 1989, after he began the season with the CBA Quad City Thunder. He went on to play six years with the Hornets, averaging 8.4 ppg. and 5.0 rpg. in 390 games. He shot 52.9 percent (1297-2454) from the field over his Hornets career, ranking him first in franchise history, while he ranks fifth all-time in blocks (283), fifth all-time in offensive rebounding (622) and fifth all-time in games played (390). Gattison's best season came as a Hornet when he averaged 12.7 ppg, 7.1 rpg, 1.6 apg. and 0.8 bpg. while playing in 82 games during the 1991-92 campaign.
The Vancouver Grizzlies selected Gattison in the first round (16th overall pick) of the 1995 Expansion Draft. He began the 1995-96 season with the Grizzlies, where he averaged 9.2 points and 4.6 rebounds, but was traded to Orlando on Feb. 22. Gattison did not play in a game with the Magic and retired following the end of the season.
Gattison capped his collegiate career at Old Dominion by being named the 1986 Sun Belt Conference Player of the Year and garnered All-Sun Belt honors twice (1985, 1986). He finished his career as the conference's all-time leading rebounder (963) and currently stands second in the league's history. At ODU, he now ranks 11th in career scoring (1623), fifth in career rebounding and seventh in career blocked shots. He averaged 13.3 ppg. and 7.9 rpg. during his four-year career and was named to the Sun Belt Conference All-Decade Team.
Sichting is in his second tour with the Timberwolves, after spending the 2006-07 season at Marquette University as an assistant coach under Tom Creen. He was with the Wolves for 10 seasons, nine of which were spent as an assistant coach. He originally came to the organization on May 11, 1995, when he was named director of scouting and player development.
Sichting acquired an in-depth knowledge of the pro game from his 10 seasons as a player in the NBA. He began his career in 1980 and spent the following five seasons with the Indiana Pacers, averaging a career-high 11.5 ppg. during the 1983-84 season. In 1985, Sichting signed with the Boston Celtics and became an integral reserve. In 1986, he teamed with Kevin McHale to lead the Celtics to an NBA title. That season he averaged 6.5 ppg. while shooting 57.0 percent from the floor and 92.4 percent from the free throw line.
Midway through the 1987-88 campaign, he was traded to the Portland Trail Blazers. He finished his playing career in 1989-90 as a member of the Charlotte Hornets and Milwaukee Bucks. Sichting appeared in 598 career regular season games, averaging 6.9 ppg. and 3.3 apg.
After his playing career, he remained in Boston and ran the Jerry Sichting Basketball Camp for five years. He also spent four seasons (1991-95) serving as an analyst on Celtics' radio broadcasts.
March 2002, Sichting was inducted into the Indiana Basketball hall of Fame. Graduating from Martinsville High School (Ind.), he played four seasons (1975-79) of basketball at Purdue University. He was captain of the 1978-79 Bolermakers squad that finished 27-8 and were co-champions of the Big Ten Conference with the Magic Johnson led Michigan State Spartans. Sichting helped lead the Boilers to the 1979 NIT Finals. Named a All-Big Ten Conference first team selection his senior year, he still currently holds the school career free throw percentage record with 86.7 percent accuracy, and ranks 29th in all-time scoring (1161).
Farnam completed his 12th season with the Minnesota Timberwolves and his eighth as the team's head athletic trainer. In addition to being responsible for every aspect of the Wolves' training room operations, Farnam works closely with the team's medical staff in monitoring each player's physical condition as well as assessing and treating injuries. He is also responsible for coordinating team travel.
This offseason, Farnam served as the head athletic trainer for the NBA's Basketball without Borders Asia contingent that visited New Delhi, India. The group, which included current NBA players Samuel Dalembert, Pat Garrity, Kyle Korver and Ronny Turiaf, worked with local players to promote the game and encourage positive social change in the areas of education, health and wellness, with an emphasis on HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention.
Farnam was also the athletic trainer for the 2007 USA Basketball Men's U19 National Team that brought home the silver medal from the 2007 FIBA U19 World Championship in Nova Sad, Serbia, in July 2007. He was also the athletic trainer for the gold medal winning USA Basketball Men's Goodwill Games basketball team that competed in Brisbane, Australia, in September 2001, and provided medical coverage for the USA women's volleyball team at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., in July 2003.
Farnam graduated with a bachelor's degree in sports medicine from St. Cloud State University and has a master's degree in exercise science and health promotions from California University of Pennsylvania. He is a certified member of the National Trainers Association, the National Strength and Conditioning Association and the National Academy of Sports Medicine.
Sharpe closed out his first season with the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2008-09 after serving as the head athletic trainer for the Charlotte Bobcats since its inception into the NBA in 2004.
Prior to Charlotte, Sharpe was the assistant athletic trainer/strength and conditioning coach for the Minnesota Timberwolves for two seasons, which included the team's Midwest Division title and run to the Western Conference Finals. Sharpe was also the head basketball athletic trainer at the University of Connecticut during a nine-year stint with the Huskies and was in charge of the team's medical care during its NCAA Championship season in 1999.
Sharpe was the athletic trainer for the 2008 USA Basketball Men's U18 Team that captured a silver medal in Argentina, and was athletic trainer for the 2002 USA Junior World Championship Qualifying Team that earned the bronze medal in Isla de Margarita, Venezuela.