Hawks Announce Basketball Operations Additions, Promotions

ATLANTA -- The Atlanta Hawks Basketball Club today announced several additions and promotions within the basketball operations department.

The new hires include Chelsea Lane as Executive Director of Athletic Performance and Sports Medicine, where she will oversee the Hawks’ Athletic Performance Team and medical staff.  Additional new hires to the APT staff include Michael Irras Head Strength & Conditioning Coach, John Dusel as Assistant Athletic Trainer/Strength & Conditioning, and Ty Terrell as Assistant Strength & Conditioning Coach.  

Dwight Lutz recently joined the organization as Director of Basketball Strategy & Analytics, Dipesh Mistry has been hired as Head Video Coordinator, veteran NBA executive Larry Riley has been named Senior Advisor, Nick Ressler has been added as Coordinator of Basketball Operations and Victor Williams has been named as a Security Consultant.

Promotions include Rod Higgins, who has been named Vice President of Basketball Operations, and Daniel Starkman, who has been elevated to Manager of Basketball Operations. Additionally, Therian Williams moves into an Assistant Video Coordinator role.

Lane was with the Golden State Warriors the last three years, serving as Head of Physical Performance and Sports Medicine the last two after beginning her stint as Head Performance Therapist. Lane joined the Warriors from High Performance Sport New Zealand, the provider of sports medicine and athletic performance programs for that nation’s Olympic athletes. The native of Australia was also the lead physiotherapist for New Zealand’s national track and field program.

Also formerly with the Warriors, Irr was most recently Head of Strength and Conditioning. He joined Golden State in 2015 after serving in a similar position for the Charlotte Bobcats from 2008-11 and as the assistant strength and conditioning coach for the Chicago Bulls from 2006-08. Irr is an Exercise Science graduate of University of Connecticut with a Doctorate in Physical Therapy from University of North Carolina.

Dusel comes to the Hawks from Golden State as well, where last season he was Assistant Athletic Trainer/Strength & Conditioning following a season as the team’s Sports Performance Intern. He has a Bachelor’s in Athletic Training from the University of New England.

Terrell spent the last five years with Indianapolis Fitness and Sports Training (IFAST) as a performance coach. Prior to that, he owned and operated True Athletic Development, where he developed and implemented customized strength and conditioning programs. He also has experience with the Indy 11 of the NASL. Terrell attended Indiana Wesleyan University.

Lutz comes to the Hawks from the Minnesota Timberwolves, where he was a Basketball Operations Analyst. Lutz was previously with the NBA for four years as Senior Manager, Game Analytics and Strategy. Prior to his time with the NBA, Lutz served as a Statistical Analyst for Harris Connect, LLC. Lutz also spent time as a Teaching Assistant and Instructor, as well as a Statistical Consultant, at the University of Florida, where he received his Master’s in Statistics.  

Most recently with the Phoenix Suns as the team’s Assistant Video Coordinator, Mistry was formerly an Assistant Coach at McMaster University and Ryerson University. He also has experience as a Video Coordinator for the men’s and women’s senior Canadian national teams. Mistry holds a Bachelor of commerce degree from Ryerson.

A veteran of nearly 50 years in basketball, including the last 30 in the NBA, Riley was the General Manager of the Warriors from 2009 to 2012, later serving as a consultant for the team. He was also an Assistant Coach and Director of Scouting for the Warriors, an Assistant Coach and Advance Scout for the Dallas Mavericks, Director of Player Personnel for the Vancouver Grizzlies and an Assistant Coach and Scout for the Milwaukee Bucks. Riley is the former Head Coach at Eastern New Mexico and Chadron State (NE).

Ressler joins the Hawks after working as an Analyst with Tishman Speyer, a Commercial Real Estate firm in New York. He has internship experience with WME/IMG in their Global Partnerships Group, with Wasserman in their Team Sports Group and with the NFL Network for their Integrated Sales team. Ressler majored in Finance, earning a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Georgetown’s McDonough School of Business.

With a varied background in law enforcement, Victor Williams joined the Hawks after eight years as an Agent with Homeland Security, based in Miami. Following high school and eight-and-a-half years in the United States Coast Guard, the Norfolk, VA native worked with U.S. Customs while earning a Liberal Arts degree from Berry University. He later worked as a customs agent in Atlanta from 2000-05 and with the Joint Terrorism Task Force from 2005-10. 

Higgins, a longtime NBA player, executive, coach and scout, played 13 seasons with Chicago, Seattle, San Antonio, New Jersey, Golden State, Sacramento and Cleveland, before retiring in 1994. Higgins was an Assistant Coach with the Warriors from 1994-2000 before joining the Washington Wizards as Assistant General Manager. He returned to Golden State as General Manager, then spent 2007-14 with the Charlotte Bobcats, finishing as President of Basketball Operations. He was a college scout for the Hawks last season.

Starkman began with the Hawks as a seasonal assistant in 2015 before being promoted to several different positions within basketball operations. He was most recently Manager of Basketball Information and Scouting Coordinator. He is a graduate of the University of Florida, where he earned a Bachelor’s in Business Administration, while also serving as a student manager for the men’s basketball team from 2011-15.

Therian Williams has been with the Hawks since 2016, working in video operations and player development. He was previously the Video Coordinator at his alma mater, St. Mary’s College, from 2013-16. He was team manager for the Gaels from 2009-13, earning his Bachelor’s in Sociology.