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CLEVELAND – The Cleveland Cavaliers have hired Antonio Lang as an Assistant Coach, Cavaliers General Manager Koby Altman and Head Coach John Beilein announced today from Cleveland Clinic Courts.
“We are very happy to welcome Antonio back to Cleveland. He has had a diverse, successful career and brings a deep knowledge of so many different aspects of the game, both as a player and as a coach, in the NBA and internationally,” said Altman. “Antonio has been a winner at every level of basketball and brings a broad perspective of the game along with a firm understanding of what a winning culture requires. We know his basketball mind and experience will translate well to having a very positive and impactful role as a member of our coaching staff.”
“It has been a priority of mine to identify coaches who share a common vision and philosophy of teaching the game of basketball and being part of a winning culture,” said Beilein. “Antonio Lang is one of those unique individuals who exemplifies those qualities. He has demonstrated a consistent work ethic and respect for the game that’s easily relatable to players at every skill level.”
“His experiences as both a coach and player in this league and internationally will make Antonio a valuable asset to our coaching staff. Success has followed Antonio over his entire career and that has been a direct result of his team-first mentality and his love of the game of basketball. This is another great addition to our staff.”
Lang joins Beilein’s staff after spending the last five years as an assistant coach with the Utah Jazz, most recently being promoted to the front of the bench prior to the start of the 2018-19 season. During his time with Utah, the Jazz reached the playoffs in each of the last three seasons. Prior to joining Utah in 2014, Lang served as head coach of the Mitsubishi Diamond Dolphins in Japan’s National Basketball League (NBL) for four seasons, leading the Dolphins to the playoffs in 2014. He additionally served as an assistant coach for Mitsubishi from 2006-10.
“First, I want to recognize the great opportunity for growth that Coach Snyder and the Jazz organization have provided. It has been a first-class organization to be a part of and I thank them for what has been a great experience,” said Lang. “Coming back to Cleveland, a place that I really enjoyed and appreciated when I played here, was a great opportunity as well and one that I felt was a special fit for my basketball journey. Understanding the direction of this team and the specific approach from Coach Beilein and Koby Altman that is being used to work towards our culture, growth, goals and sustained success, was something that I really connected with and believe in. I am greatly looking forward to getting started with our players and my fellow coaches and I am thankful to be back in Cleveland.”
Originally selected by the Phoenix Suns with the 29th overall pick in the 1994 NBA Draft, Lang played six seasons in the NBA from 1994-2000, appearing in 143 games (one start) with Phoenix, Cleveland, Miami, Toronto and Philadelphia. In three seasons as a Cavalier from 1995-97 and 1998-99, he competed in 115 contests (one start) and reached the playoffs in 1996. Lang also played professionally in the American Basketball Association (ABA), Continental Basketball Association (CBA) and International Basketball League (IBL), and overseas in the Philippines and Japan. Prior to his professional experience, Lang played four years collegiately at Duke University from 1990-94 and was a member of the winningest graduating class in NCAA history – reaching the Final Four three times and winning back-to-back national championships in 1991 and 1992. He officially retired from playing professional basketball in 2006.
Lang and his wife, Lekeshia, have two sons – Alan, who plays collegiate basketball at Weber State University, and Antonio Jr., who played at the University of South Florida.