College - Franklin & Marshall
Chris Finch enters his first season as an assistant coach with the Rockets after spending two campaigns as head coach of Houston’s single-affiliation NBA Development League partner the Rio Grande Valley Vipers.
In two seasons at the helm of the Vipers, Finch registered a mark of 67-33 (.670) and guided Rio Grande Valley to back-to-back D-League Finals. In 2009-10, Finch took home the Dennis Johnson Coach of the Year Award en route to capturing the 2009-10 D-League championship. Finch also led the Western Conference All-Stars to a win at the 2009 D-League All-Star Game in Dallas. Finch signed on with the Vipers after serving as an assistant coach for the Dallas Mavericks during the 2009 NBA Summer League in Las Vegas.
Prior to his return to the United States, Finch built a successful overseas coaching career that included taking over a dormant Great Britain National Team in May 2006 and winning FIBA’s 2007 Division B Promotional Competition. In 2009, his squad qualified for the European Championships for the first time since 1981. Finch will also lead the British National Team in the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.
In addition to his work with the British National Team, Finch was a head coach of teams in England (Sheffield Sharks), Germany (Giessen 46ers) and Belgium (Euphony Bree, Dexia Mons-Hainaut) from 1997-2009. Finch, who has three titles and three BBL Cup Finals on his resume, qualified for the playoffs in 11 of his 12 seasons overseas. A three-time Coach of the Year, he was also selected as a FIBA EuroCup All-Star head coach. He began his career with Sheffield, which was the same club that he played on during his four-year professional playing career. Under Finch’s tutelage, the Sharks enjoyed the franchise’s most successful run in its history. Finch was named the BBL Coach of the Year after winning the regular season title with Sheffield in 1998-99. He also led Euphony Bree to their first-ever championship in 2005.
Raised in Reading, Pennsylvania, Finch graduated in 1992 as a two-time All-American at Franklin & Marshall College. The 6-foot-4 guard/forward was inducted into the F&M Sports Hall of Fame in 2002. Overall, he started the final 115 games of his collegiate career and compiled a 102-13 record (.887) over that span, which stood as the most career wins as a starter in NCAA Division III history.