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Coach Bill Laimbeer – President of Basketball Operations and Head Coach of the Las Vegas Aces – Las Vegas Aces
November 1, 2018 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
Bill Laimbeer, a two-time WNBA Coach of the Year, three-time WNBA Champion, and two-time NBA Champion, was named the president of basketball operations and head coach of the Las Vegas Aces on December 8, 2017.
Defying all expectations, the Aces stayed in the playoff chase until the season’s last week, improving from 8 to 14 wins on the year. Laimbeer molded number one overall draft pick A’ja Wilson into the WNBA Rookie of the Year, and fifth-year guard Kayla McBride and second-year point guard Kelsey Plum enjoyed their best seasons as professionals.
Las Vegas expects to make a run at the playoffs next season, and for the foreseeable future, after winning the 2019 WNBA Draft Lottery, giving them the first pick in next year’s draft for an unprecedented third year in a row.
Prior to coming to Las Vegas, Laimbeer guided the New York Liberty to three straight 20-win seasons—the first time in franchise history the Liberty reached the 20-win plateau in three consecutive years.
Prior to joining the Liberty, Laimbeer spent eight seasons (2002-09) as general manager and head coach of the Detroit Shock where he earned WNBA Coach of the Year honors in his first full season as head coach (2003). He took over a team that finished 9-23 the previous year and led them to a league-best 25 wins the following season. The 16-win improvement was the largest in WNBA history.
Laimbeer led the Shock to a 137-93 (.596) overall record, including six-straight playoff appearances as the squad won WNBA Championships in 2003, 2006 and 2008.
Prior to returning to the WNBA, Laimbeer spent two seasons as an assistant in the NBA with the Minnesota Timberwolves (2009-2011).
A 14-year NBA veteran, Laimbeer was a four-time All-Star for the Detroit Pistons. As a member of the famed “Bad Boys,” Laimbeer totaled 13,790 points and 10,400 rebounds in his career, becoming only the 19th player in NBA history to eclipse 10,000 in both categories. A key member of back-to-back NBA Championships in 1989 and 1990, he had his No. 40 jersey retired by the franchise in 1995.
Laimbeer played collegiately at Notre Dame from 1975-79.