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#pounditThursday, January 20, 2022

Articles tagged: Willie Green

Pelicans coach had great reaction to improbable buzzer-beater

Willie Green celebrates

New Orleans Pelicans coach Willie Green had a great reaction to an improbable buzzer-beater his team made on Wednesday to beat the Oklahoma City Thunder.

The Pelicans were leading 110-107 with 4.5 seconds left. Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander made a 3-pointer from long range to tie the game with just two seconds left.

OKC was elated, but they didn’t have long to celebrate.

The Pelicans got the ball and Devonte’ Graham threw up a heave from 61 feet away that banked in to win the game 113-110. It was unreal.

What a finish and what a shot!

The best part was seeing the reaction from Green. You can see the coach jump around in this video:

Green said after the game that he prayed for some help on the shot.

The Lord came through.

The Pelicans may be 9-21, but they’ve now won 2 of 3 thanks in part to this big shot.

Willie Green hired as Pelicans head coach

Willie Green

Willie Green has been considered the frontrunner for the New Orleans Pelicans head coach job for quite some time, and the team has now made it official.

The Pelicans announced on Thursday that they have hired Green as their head coach.

Green previously worked as an assistant coach for the Phoenix Suns, so he was credited with helping the team reach the NBA Finals this year. The 39-year-old played in the NBA for 12 seasons and served as an assistant under Steve Kerr for the Warriors from 2016-2019. He joined Monty Williams’ staff in Phoenix in 2019, where he has been instrumental in coordinating a defense that has become one of the best in the NBA.

The Pelicans fired former head coach Stan Van Gundy after just one season with the team, likely due to philosophical differences. They obviously feel Green will be a better asset for Zion Williamson and the rest of the team’s young core.

Report: Willie Green frontrunner for Pelicans head coach job

Willie Green

The New Orleans Pelicans appear to be closing in on a new head coach.

As first reported by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Phoenix Suns assistant Willie Green is the “strong frontrunner” to land the Pelicans job.

Green hasn’t been a huge name in public coaching rumors this offseason, but the Suns’ lead assistant has paid his dues. He had a 12-season playing career in the NBA and served as an assistant under Steve Kerr for the Warriors from 2016-2019. He joined Monty Williams’ staff in Phoenix in 2019, where he has been instrumental in coordinating a defense that has become one of the best in the NBA.

The Pelicans recently parted ways with coach Stan Van Gundy amid what appeared to be clear philosophical differences. The hope will be that Green provides the fresh voice and improved atmosphere that the young team seems to be looking for.