WASHINGTON, DC – The Washington Wizards announced today that Don Newman will join Randy Wittman’s staff as an assistant coach.
Newman brings more than 20 years of coaching experience to the Wizards’ staff, including the past seven seasons as an assistant coach for the San Antonio Spurs. During his successful tenure with the Spurs, Newman worked under Gregg Popovich and helped lead San Antonio to a pair of NBA Championships (2005 and 2007), a pair of Western Conference championships (2005 and 2007) and five Division titles (2005, 2006, 2009, 2011 and 2012). In each of Newman’s seven seasons on the bench, the Spurs won 50 or more games, including a 50-16 mark last season en route to a Southwest Division title.
“Don is an outstanding coach and a great addition to our staff,” said Wizards Head Coach Randy Wittman. “He brings championship experience from his time with the Spurs and has been very successful in every stop of his career.”
Newman originally joined the NBA as an assistant coach with the Milwaukee Bucks in 1999. In his four seasons with the Bucks, Milwaukee made three playoff appearances and won the Central Division title in the 2000-01 season. Newman served as an assistant with the New Jersey during the 2003-04 season, in which the Nets captured the Atlantic Division title and advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals. He also served as an assistant for USA Basketball during the 2002 World Championships.
Newman spent 10 years in college basketball prior to his time in the NBA. He served as a head coach with Sacramento State (1992-97) and was named the interim head coach at Arizona State in 1997, leading the Sun Devils to an 18-14 record and a trip to the NIT Tournament. Newman also had stints as an assistant coach with Oregon and Washington State.
Newman played three seasons of basketball at the University of Idaho (after spending his freshman year at LSU) and was originally drafted by two NBA teams. After being selected by Indiana in the fourth round of the 1979 Draft (as a junior eligible selection), he was selected by Boston in the third round of the 1980 Draft. He played three seasons in the CBA (for the Montana Golden Nuggets where George Karl was his head coach) and also played seven seasons in the CFL. He was invited to training camp with both the Seattle Seahawks and the New York Jets.