There’s a first for everything, and the San Antonio Spurs’ Becky Hammon achieved two firsts in her career — according to New York Magazine’s The Cut, Hammon is not only the first full-time female assistant coach in the history of all four major sports leagues, she is also the first female head coach of an NBA summer league team.
Hammon, a former point guard for the WNBA San Antonio Silver Stars, recently added another item to her glowing resumé: she led the Spurs to a 93-90 victory over the Phoenix Suns, clinching the summer league title in Las Vegas on July 20.
The Cut reports that summer league MVP and guard Jonathan Simmons spoke highly of his coach, saying “She did what she was supposed to do. … It’s always good to be a part of history. This day will go down in the books for years to come. … I love her. I barely know her and I love her already.”
Hammon was hired by Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich last August, and since then, The Cut says Popovich has repeatedly said “that he didn’t hire Hammon because she’s a woman; he hired her because she’s good.” Popovich told the Associated Press in the midst of regular season play, “I don’t know if her perspective is unique. It’s women instead of men, but it’s the same game.”
It is, indeed, the same game, and Hammon proved that true talent transcends gender barriers.