Lionel Hollins was named as the 19th head coach in Nets NBA franchise history on July 7, 2014.
A veteran of over 22 years of NBA coaching experience, Hollins most recently served as head coach of the Memphis Grizzlies in 2012-13, where he guided the team to a franchise record 56 wins and reached the Western Conference Finals. Hollins took the helm in Memphis midway through the 2008-09 season and led the Grizzlies to consecutive postseason appearances in his final three campaigns as coach. In his four-plus season stint as head coach, Hollins garnered a record of 196-155 (.558).
The Las Vegas native was an original member of the Vancouver franchise as an assistant coach, and was a staple on the sidelines for 10 of the club’s first 12 seasons (1995‐00, 2002‐07). Hollins twice served as the Grizzlies’ interim head coach, when he guided Vancouver to an 18‐42 finish (.300) in 1999‐00, and again took over for four games in 2004‐05, following the resignation of Hubie Brown. Overall, Hollins owns a career NBA coaching record of 214‐201 (.516). Prior to joining the Grizzlies, the Arizona State graduate spent seven years with the Phoenix Suns (1988‐95) as an assistant coach under Cotton Fitzsimmons and later Paul Westphal. He began his coaching career as an assistant at Arizona State in 1985 and served for part of the 2008-09 season as an assistant coach for the Milwaukee Bucks.
Hollins honed his straightforward approach by serving under three NBA Coaches of the Year, including Brown, Fitzsimmons and Mike Fratello and was on the coaching staff when Brown and Fitzsimmons were honored with the award a second time. During his 10‐year playing career (1975‐85) in the NBA, Hollins was led by several notable head coaches, including the NBA’s all‐time coaching wins leader and Hall of Famer Lenny Wilkens, Hall of Famers Billy Cunningham, Chuck Daly and Jack Ramsay, as well as Bill Fitch and Paul Silas.
Selected sixth overall in the first round of the 1975 NBA Draft by the Portland Trail Blazers, Hollins earned a spot on the 1976 All‐Rookie First Team and won an NBA Championship as a starter for the Trail Blazers in 1977. A year later, he was an NBA All‐Star while also being named to the NBA’s All‐Defensive First Team. Hollins averaged 11.6 points, 4.5 assists and 1.56 steals over 673 career games with the Trail Blazers, Philadelphia 76ers, San Diego Clippers, Detroit Pistons and Houston Rockets.
Hollins has been inducted into the Halls of Fame of the NCAA, Arizona State University, Nevada High School Basketball, Southern Nevada Sports and the Pac‐10. In addition, he has been named one of the Top 100 athletes of Nevada and one of the top 150 athletes of Arizona. His No. 14 jersey is retired by the Trail Blazers and his No. 33 jersey was raised to the rafters by Arizona State. Hollins has also had the distinction of serving on the NBA’s competition committee, which recommends changes to playing rules or any other competition‐related matters to the Board of Governors for its consideration and vote.
Hollins has been extremely active in the community, having served on the Board of Directors for the Grizzlies Foundation. In addition, in conjunction with Lionel Hollins Charities, he established the annual Bowling for Backpacks event, which has raised thousands of dollars to purchase school supplies and uniforms for underprivileged youth since its inception in 2003, and the Role Models Dinner, which includes a fine dining experience and a connection with mentors that volunteer for one year at their school. Hollins has been involved with a Christmas holiday charity Bike Buddies event, held in conjunction with the Memphis Police and Fire Departments, distributing bikes, helmets and books, as well as teaching fire safety lessons to children. He also started a community garden with United Healthcare to promote healthy eating habits to Memphis middle and high school students.