Coaching staff has a combined 15 years of NBA experience

Oct. 6, 2009 – Bakersfield, CA – The Bakersfield Jam announced today that Greg Minor, Mark Strickland, and Chris Leazier will be joining head coach Will Voigt as assistant coaches for the 2009-10 season, while Jeff Christensen will assist the coaches as an intern.

“We have assembled an excellent staff of coaches that understand how hard you have to work to be successful at this level. I can not wait for our season to get started and for our players to arrive”, stated Will Voigt.

Bakersfield Jam, Managing Partner David Higdon stated, “Will has surrounded himself with professionals that are hungry to teach players the fundamentals of sound basketball. Greg, Mark, Chris, and Jeff bring a wealth of experience to our franchise, I believe that our players will benefit greatly by the talent that has been assembled.”

Mark Strickland was never drafted by an NBA franchise but played 8 seasons in the NBA for the Pacers, Heat, Nuggets, Nets, Hawks and Mavericks. Mark has also played in the CBA and overseas. Last season Mark was an assistant coach at Morehouse College on Grady Brewer’s staff.

Greg Minor played all five seasons of his NBA career with the Boston Celtics. In his Rookie Season Greg was the #1 ranked Rookie with a Free-Throw percentage of .833. In the 1996 NBA All-Star Weekend Greg placed 3rd in the Slam Dunk Competition. Greg spent last season on Paul Woolpert’s Tulsa 66ers staff as Assistant Coach.

Chris Leazier over the past fifteen years has worked as a head coach and assistant coach at the college and high school level. The past two seasons Chris was the women’s basketball head coach at Saint Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire. He also served as an assistant coach for both the men’s and women’s basketball teams at Dartmouth College from 2000-2007.

Jeff Christensen (Intern) recently graduated with a degree in Communications from Eastern Washington University where he was a member of the men’s basketball team. Jeff has spent the last several years honing his coaching skills working out college players and by serving as a camp counselor for the Portland Trailblazers youth basketball program.

NBA Development League:
The NBA Development League, founded in 2001, is the NBA’s official minor league and features 16 teams with direct affiliations to NBA teams during the 2008-09 season. This Fall, two new NBA D-League teams will begin play in Portland, Maine and Springfield, Mass.-- the birthplace of basketball. Eighty-four former NBA Development League players were on 2008-09 NBA end-of-season rosters, amounting to almost 20 percent of NBA players, and the league continues to develop coaches, referees, and front office staff for the NBA and its teams. In fostering the league’s connection to the community, its teams, players and staff promote health and wellness, support local needs and interests, and assist in educational development through NBA D-League Cares programs. The NBA D-League also advances the game of basketball as the research and development arm of the NBA. Throughout the season fans can watch all NBA D-League games on NBA Futurecast, the free live Web-streaming initiative found at nba.com/futurecast.

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