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Volume 26 No. 62
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Cavs' Altman Hailed For Role In Hiring Lindsay Gottlieb As Assistant

Gottlieb is the first woman to leave a college head coaching position for an NBA role

The Cavaliers have hired Cal women's basketball coach Lindsay Gottlieb as an assistant, making her the "sixth female NBA assistant," according to Chris Fedor of the Cleveland PLAIN DEALER. Gottlieb is the "first to leave a college head coaching position for the NBA." Cavs GM Koby Altman "spearheaded this process initially." Each time he "discussed possible coaches with his most trusted confidants and pointed out the traits that mattered most, Gottlieb’s name kept coming up." Shortly after hiring John Beilein as coach, Altman "sent an introductory text to Gottlieb before meeting face-to-face with her while both were in Chicago" (Cleveland PLAIN DEALER, 6/13). THE ATHLETIC's Joe Vardon notes Gottlieb was "Altman’s hire, not Beilein’s." When Beilein and Gottlieb did meet, they "hit it off" -- and he is "thrilled to have her on staff -- but the courting was done by Altman." Gottlieb said that she was first introduced to Altman by a "mutual friend in the NBA." She thought the discussion was "going to be about how to get more women involved in the NBA." But when Altman and Gottlieb actually met face-to-face, it was so he "could offer her a job," with Beilein just hired the week before (, 6/13).

THE RIGHT MOVE: The PLAIN DEALER's Fedor noted NBA Commissioner Adam Silver has “made no secret of his interest in the league pursuing women in its coaching ranks.” Gottlieb’s track record at Cal “fits what the league is looking for” (Cleveland PLAIN DEALER, 6/13). THE ATHLETIC’s Jason Lloyd wrote it is “no surprise the NBA is far and away the leader in professional sports in terms of hiring women.” The NBA has “long been the most progressive of all the major sports.” The Cavs historically have been “one of the most diverse franchises in the NBA,” as five of their last seven “full-time head coaches have been African-Americans” (, 6/12).