Becky Hammon made history this past week when she was named acting head coach of the San Antonio Spurs during their game against the Los Angeles Lakers.
Following a surprising no call on DeMar DeRozan with 3:56 remaining in the second quarter, Gregg Popovich lost it. His reaction earned him a boot from the outing and paved the way for Hammon to become the first woman to be a head coach in an NBA game.
In the aftermath of the momentous event, Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving offered an interesting assessment of the situation to ESPN NBA insider Malika Andrews.
“There shouldn’t be any role that is deemed for male or female,” he said. “It should be open. And that should be the principal that we all live by. But there is still a fight.
“And I am grateful to be a part of history and Becky to make history and there is more history to be made for women and their empowerment in the work place, as well as respect across the world.
“You know, especially black native women – but all queens in general. So I was grateful to be a part of that.”
— Malika Andrews (@malika_andrews) December 31, 2020
While Irving often finds himself in the headlines for things like trade chatter, gifts from Travis Scott and his past relationship with LeBron James, he can be a very insightful person and it is nice to see that side of him.
In the aftermath of her big night, Hammon took a moment to recognize the important feat she accomplished on Wednesday.
“Obviously, it’s a big deal,” she said.
“It’s a substantial moment. I’ve been a part of this organization, I got traded here in 2007, so I’ve been in San Antonio and part of the Spurs and sports organization with the Stars and everything for 13 years. So I have a lot of time invested, and they have a lot of time invested in me, in building me and getting me better.”
Now we know what Mike Leach was up to while his team was brawling on the field. https://t.co/W6IYAcAdp3
— Game 7 (@game7__) January 1, 2021
This past offseason, Hammon was a legitimate contender for the Indiana Pacers’ vacant coaching position. That job ultimately ended up going to Nate Bjorkgren.
Hammon has also often been mentioned as a potential contender for the seemingly annual vacancy that the New York Knicks have at head coach.
Based on how things have gone for her over the past few years, it appears to be a virtual certainty that Hammon will land an official NBA head coaching gig sooner rather than later.