Pastner Recommends Stoudamire For Tigers Basketball Assistant Coach Position
May 31, 2011
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Damon Stoudamire, an assistant coach for the NBA's Memphis Grizzlies the past two years, has been recommended to join the Memphis men's basketball coaching staff, head coach Josh Pastner announced Tuesday. Stoudamire's hiring is pending approval of the University and Tennessee State Board of Regents.
"I have said many times about finding the right fit with our assistant positions, and Damon is one of those," said Pastner. "Damon played and coached at the highest level of basketball in the world, and that experience will help our program immediately.
"Damon's basketball accolades speak for themselves. He will be a great mentor to the student-athletes in our program, and we're excited to have him join the Memphis Tigers family."
Stoudamire comes to the Tigers program after completing his second season as an assistant for the Memphis Grizzlies. This past year, Stoudamire helped direct the Grizzlies to their most successful season in the organization's history. Memphis finished the 2010-11 regular season with a 46-36 record and tied for third place in the NBA's Southwest Division.
The Grizzlies, though, shocked the nation with their magical playoff run that caught the Bluff City by storm. Memphis, the Western Conference No. 8 seed, upset No. 1 seed San Antonio 4-2 in the playoffs opening round, and then took No. 4 seed Oklahoma City to seven games, before dropping the hard-fought series 4-3.
In Stoudamire's first season in Memphis in 2009-10, the Grizzlies just missed making the playoffs with a 40-42 overall record. Despite no postseason, Stoudamire was a member of the coaching staff that guided the Grizzlies to a 16-game turnaround from the previous year (24-58 record in 2008-09).
Stoudamire also coached Memphis' summer league squad during the NBA's 2010 Summer League in Las Vegas.
Prior to his joining the Grizzlies staff, Stoudamire was the director of player development for the Rice Owls basketball program under head coach Ben Braun for the 2008-09 campaign.
"I'm looking forward to joining the Memphis Tigers basketball family," said Stoudamire. "I've been looking to get back to the college game for awhile, and this was a chance I couldn't pass on. I am thankful for this opportunity, and I'm ready to get to work with Coach Pastner and his staff to help the Tigers reach their goal - which is every college program's goal - of winning a national championship."
Before crossing over to the coaching staff ranks, Stoudamire played 13 seasons in the NBA from 1995-2008 for Toronto, Portland, Memphis and San Antonio. For his career, the 5-foot-10 guard averaged 13.4 points, 6.1 assists and 3.4 rebounds in 878 games.
Nicknamed "Mighty Mouse," Stoudamire was the No. 7 overall selection by the Toronto Raptors in the 1995 NBA Draft. In his first NBA season, he averaged 19.0 points, 9.3 assists (career best) and 4.0 rebounds and earned the 1995-96 NBA Rookie of the Year award. Stoudamire was also named to the NBA's All-Rookie first team and received the NBA Rookie All-Star Game MVP honor.
There was no sophomore jinx for Stoudamire in 1996-97. During his second NBA season with the Raptors, he averaged a career-best 20.2 points and also posted averages of 8.8 assists and 4.1 boards while playing in 81 of 82 regular season contests.
During the 1997-98 NBA campaign, Stoudamire was traded to his hometown squad, the Portland Trail Blazers and suited up before his home crowd for eight years (1997-98 through 2004-05). His final year in Portland was his best scoring season for the Trail Blazers, averaging 15.8 points. He played in 81 games and also averaged 5.7 assists and 3.8 rebounds. In that final year in Portland, Stoudamire scored a career-high 54 points versus the New Orleans Hornets on Jan. 14, 2005. Stoudamire's 54-point performance is still the Trail Blazers' single-game scoring mark.
From 2005-08, Stoudamire wore the Grizzlies uniform and played in 118 games. He averaged 8.4 points, 4.6 assists and 2.6 rebounds in his two-plus years in Memphis. Stoudamire finished the final year (2007-08) of his career in San Antonio, where he saw action in 31 games.
In his NBA career, Stoudamire played on seven teams that advanced to the playoffs, including six with the Trail Blazers. Stoudamire was a member of the 1999-2000 Portland team that made it to the Western Conference championship series, before falling in seven games (4-3) to the Shaquille O'Neal-and-Kobe Bryant-led Los Angeles Lakers.
Before his NBA career, Stoudamire played four seasons (1992-95) of collegiate basketball at the University of Arizona under Hall of Fame head coach Lute Olson. A 1994-95 consensus All-America pick, Stoudamire was a Wooden Award National Player of the Year finalist and the co-Pac-10 Conference Player of the Year that same season.
Stoudamire helped lead the Wildcats to a combined 101-24 record (.808 winning percentage), two Pac-10 Conference crowns (1993, 1994), four NCAA Tournament appearances (1992-95) and one NCAA Final Four (1994 in Charlotte). He served as the team's co-captain in the 1993-94 and 1994-95 seasons.
Stoudamire is one of only two players (Gary Payton is the other) in Pac-10 Conference history to score over 1,800 points, dish out over 600 assists and pull down over 400 rebounds in a career. He still ranks on the Arizona basketball career charts for scoring (6th with 1,849 points), assists (3rd with 663) and steals (8th with 174).
He remains the only player in Wildcats hoops history with two 40-point performances in a career, with both coming in Pac-10 Conference road games at Stanford (45 points) and at Washington State (40) in the 1994-95 season. That same campaign (1994-95), Stoudamire became only the third player in the program's history to record a triple-double, posting 32 points, 12 boards and 14 assists versus Oregon on Feb. 25, 1995.