LONDON – The National Basketball Association (NBA), the Mayor of London and Basketball England today announced the launch of the “London Coaches Program,” a collaboration to develop the next generation of basketball coaches in England’s capital. The London Coaches Program, which is open to aspiring London-based coaches ages 16-30, aims to engage hundreds of coaches who will in turn reach thousands of young players across the city in the coming years.
The initiative will provide participating coaches with the tools, techniques and strategies to help the coaches enhance their basketball player development philosophy.
The announcement was made today at a launch event in London by London Mayor Sadiq Khan and NBA Europe and Middle East Managing Director Ralph Rivera, who were joined by Naismith Basketball Hall of Famer and 11-time NBA All-Star Allen Iverson. The event welcomed more than 200 aspiring coaches and local basketball stakeholders, along with 20 local school children who took part in on-court activities led by Iverson.
“I am delighted to be working with the NBA and Basketball England to fund this life-changing opportunity to London’s next generation of basketball coaches,” said Khan. “These coaches will not only help unearth the next generation of London basketball stars, but will act as mentors and role models in their communities as they utilise the power of sport to change lives for the better. London is now the sporting capital of the world, from grassroots to the elite level and it all starts with our top talent receiving the best possible coaching. I look forward to seeing the results of this collaboration in the months and years to come as we help build a better London for everyone.”
“Basketball is of immense value to society, providing support and direction for many, including those from underserved communities,” said Basketball England CEO Stewart Kellett. “We are proud to be working alongside the NBA and the Mayor of London to deliver this programme and train a cohort of great basketball coaches that can change and positively influence not only their own lives, but the lives of thousands of young Londoners.”
“Collaborating with Mayor Khan and Basketball England to train the next generation of coaches in London is a logical next step in our ongoing efforts to grow basketball at the grassroots level in England,” said Rivera. “High-quality coaching is critical in getting more youth to learn and play the game the right way, and the London Coaches Program will give coaches the tools, resources, and techniques they need to grow interest and participation in their local communities. We thank Mayor Khan and Basketball England for their support and belief in the impact this program can have on elevating the sport.”
The London Coaches Program will tip off in Spring 2023 and will be led by a dedicated Program Director who will be announced in the coming months. The curriculum, which includes in-person and virtual training sessions such as Q&As with NBA coaching staff, as well as a mentoring component, was developed by the NBA’s International Basketball Operations department in consultation with current and former NBA coaches, Basketball England and Mayor Khan’s office. Over the course of the free program, participants will receive a Basketball England Community Coach Education and Qualification, license and insurance, as well as first aid training, mental health and welfare education, access to NBA and Basketball England resources and more. Aspiring coaches can register their interest to take part in the program here.
A 14-year NBA veteran, Iverson led the NBA in scoring four times and led the league in steals three times. He was named the NBA Most Valuable Player in 2001 and went on to be inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in 2016 and named to the NBA’s 75th Anniversary Team prior to the 2021-22 season.
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About Basketball England
Basketball England is the national governing body of the sport in England. We promote, administer and govern basketball for all levels of participants of every age and ability, whilst offering specialist guidance on improving standards of the game, facilitating education and training opportunities. We deliver a competitive outlet through leagues and tournaments and progression to our national teams.
About the NBA
The National Basketball Association (NBA) is a global sports and media organization with the mission to inspire and connect people everywhere through the power of basketball. Built around five professional sports leagues: the NBA, WNBA, NBA G League, NBA 2K League and Basketball Africa League, the NBA has established a major international presence with games and programming available in 214 countries and territories in more than 50 languages, and merchandise for sale in more than 200 countries and territories on all seven continents. NBA rosters at the start of the 2022-23 season featured 120 international players from 41 countries. NBA Digital’s assets include NBA TV, NBA.com, the NBA App and NBA League Pass. The NBA has created one of the largest social media communities in the world, with 2.1 billion likes and followers globally across all league, team, and player platforms. Through NBA Cares, the league addresses important social issues by working with internationally recognized youth-serving organizations that support education, youth and family development, and health-related causes.