Will guide Eastern Conference squad Feb. 19 in Houston
NEW YORK, Jan. 18 --
Detroit Pistons head coach Flip Saunders
will coach the Eastern Conference All-Stars for the 2006 NBA All-Star Game, to be played on Sunday, Feb. 19 at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas.
Saunders and the Pistonsí (31-5, .861) coaching staff earned the honor to coach the Eastern Conference All-Stars as a result of Detroitís 117-89 defeat this evening of the Atlanta Hawks and Clevelandís (20-16, .556) 90-89 loss to the Denver Nuggets, clinching the best possible winning percentage in the Eastern Conference through games of Feb. 5, 2006.
Head coaches for the East and West All-Star teams are based on teams with the best winning percentage in each conference following the Sunday games (Feb. 5) played two weeks prior to the All-Star Game.
Having coached the Western Conference All-Star team in 2004, Saunders becomes the sixth coach (Larry Brown, Alex Hannum, Phil Jackson, Pat Riley and Lenny Wilkens) in NBA All-Star history to coach both the Eastern Conference and Western Conference All-Star team. In his first season as head coach of Detroit, Saunders has earned Coach of the Month honors for the months of November and December.
All-Star starters for both the Eastern and Western Conference will be announced on Feb. 2 and the All-Star Reserves will be announced on Feb. 9.
The NBA All-Star Game will be televised live nationally on TNT in the United States and on Rogers Sportsnet in Canada at 7 p.m. CT/ 8 p.m. ET. Live audio broadcasts are available on ESPN Radio and on NBA.com in multiple languages.