More Than 350 Coaches Attend Atlanta Hawks Coaches Clinic

Area Coaches Spent Evening Investing In Their Professional Development and Listening to Industry Experts
lloyd pierce
Kyle Hess

ATLANTA –- Earlier this evening, the Atlanta Hawks Basketball Academy hosted a free Coaches Clinic at center court of the award-winning State Farm Arena. A total of 356 local basketball coaches furthered their professional development by attending the clinic supported by the Atlanta Hawks Foundation, which invests resources into professional development opportunities for community coaches throughout the state of Georgia.

The evening, which was emceed by Hawks Play-By-Play Announcer Bob Rathbun, began with a networking reception and officially started with welcome remarks and a special hour-long question-and-answer session from Atlanta Hawks Head Coach Lloyd Pierce. After that, coaches then learned about player development directly from Atlanta Hawks assistant coaches Matt Hill and Nate Babcock.

“Providing coaching resources and professional development to hundreds of community coaches lays a foundation for positively impacting thousands of youth,” said Hawks’ Vice President of Basketball Development Jon Babul who played an integral role in organizing the event. “If we can assist coaches in delivering an enjoyable basketball experience for Atlanta’s youth, then we all win.”

Those in attendance then listened to Director of Coach Development for the USA Basketball Youth Division Don Showalter who discussed team skill development.

“It was great to have an opportunity to take part in this first-class Coaches Clinic organized by the Atlanta Hawks Basketball Academy,” said Showalter. “This evening was focused on helping other coaches improve their craft as we focused on how we teach, not just what to teach.”

Following that, Atlanta Dream Head Coach Nicki Collen presetented on man-to-man defensive priniciples.

“It was important for me to participate in this event because basketball only continues to grow if we all connect at a grassroots level,” said Collen. “I love finding ways to connect with the basketball community in Atlanta and hope my presentation benefits our sport in some small way.”

ESPN National Recruiting Director for Basketball Paul Biancardi rounded out the evening with a presentation focused around coaching today’s player.

“As someone involved with the game of basketball for more than 30 years, I am humbled and excited to be back at this year’s Coaches Clinic organized by the Atlanta Hawks Basketball Academy,” said Biancardi. “Seeing Coach Pierce spend so much time and interaction with today’s youth coaches was truly remarkable for everyone in attendance. Becoming a basketball coach was the only professional dream I ever had, so I cherish the opportunity to share and interact with today’s coaches. The Hawks continue to set the standard for growing the game of basketball in their community.”

For more information about the Atlanta Hawks Basketball Academy, visit


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