Brown Joins Hardaway’s Staff

Larry Brown is the latest person to join Penny Hardaway's staff at Memphis as an assistant basketball coach. Hardaway's combination with Brown might change Memphis' NCAA basketball odds. as the latter has a coaching career span of over four decades. Larry is already 80 and will be 81 when NCAA resumes in September and has accomplished and seen a lot on the basketball scene. The Hall of Famer goes down in history books as the only coach to win championships in both the NBA with Detroit Pistons in 2004, and NCAA with Kansas in 1988.

Larry has coached in the NBA and NCAA and has also made stops at ABA. Both NCAA and the NBA have honored Larry with the Coach of the Year award at different years. The legend who was inducted into Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame in 2002 won 1,098 games in 26 seasons and reached the playoffs 18 times during his more than four decades career. He won an NCAA title with Jayhawks, and it was among the three Four Final appearances the teams he coached made in the '80s.

Brown's most recent accomplishment was when he hit 94-39 at SMU from 2012-16. In 2018, Brown was the head coach of Auxilium Torino, a Lega Basket Serie A team in Italy. Brown now joins Memphis just after they have been in the NIT championship in spring. The Tigers have also not been in the NCAA tournament since 2014. It is the first time that Brown will be an assistant since 1967.

Brown explained his motivation of getting back in the game through an assistant role and even reflected on the time he almost became the head coach at Memphis Tigers. Brown nearly became the coach of Memphis in 1979 after Wayne Yates resigned from the Tigers while he, on the other hand, resigned from Denver Nuggets on health reasons.

Brown also confirmed that Hardaway had tried hard to bring him on board over the last three years or so.

However, it was not until now that Memphis Tigers were able to finalize the deal due to a couple of reasons. He admits that he would have found himself on the bench somewhere else if the deal had fallen through.

Brown went on to say that he even thought of going back to high school. An opening in East Hampton High School in New York would have been great, but he felt that he wouldn't give the kids the necessary attention, as he had some other obligations. He went on to say that he was not good at being idle, and a lot of people who played for him called him to go watch various games.

Brown was thrilled when Hardaway had an opening that could see him hired. More than a decade ago, Brown was Hardaway's coach in the New York Knicks, and the reunion is something unique. However, Brown had some reservations and said that he wanted a role where he does what an assistant coach is expected to do. He is waiting for Hardaway to define his role, as he is the boss. He went on to say that he wants to be a resource and help the coach in whatever way he can.

Is this the year for Memphis?

Some of Brown's mentors, such as John Bach, Pete Carril, and Tex Winter, finished their NBA careers as advisors or assistants to the NBA, and he might be headed that route, as well. This is not the first time that a former player is hiring his former coach as an assistant. In the past, Smith hired Dick Harp, his former coach, and they had a smooth relationship, as Brown was still a player.

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