The D-Fenders have hired Phil Hubbard as the head coach of the Lakers’ NBA Development League affiliate.
“We are excited to announce Phil Hubbard as the head coach of the D-Fenders,” said club President and Chief Executive Joey Buss in a statement. “Phil is an NBA veteran, consummate professional and has decades of coaching experience. His passion for basketball will inspire our players to develop both on and off the court while competing for a championship.”
Hubbard was previously an assistant with the D-Fenders (2011-13), before leaving to assist with the Santa Cruz Warriors last season.
The 57-year-old veteran coach has also worked as an assistant for a number of NBA teams including the Atlanta Hawks, Golden State Warriors and Washington Wizards.
“During his previous tenure with the team, and throughout his career, Phil has proven to be exceptional at relating to players while preparing them for the next level,” said D-Fenders General Manager Nick Mazzella. “Our team will benefit from his coaching acumen and experience as a professional athlete, as we continue to cultivate talent for the Lakers and the NBA.”
Last season Bob MacKinnon coached the D-Fenders to a 31-19 record and first place in the Western Division, but the team lost in the first round of the playoffs to Hubbard’s Warriors.
MacKinnon ran a fast-paced offense, similar to the Lakers’ system under Mike D’Antoni.
D’Antoni’s resignation ultimately meant the end of MacKinnon’s tenure with the D-Fenders. The Lakers have since hired Byron Scott. Hubbard will presumably mimic Scott’s system with the Lakers’ D-League squad.