AP source: Walt Hopkins to be next New York Liberty coach

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NEW YORK (AP) — Minnesota Lynx assistant coach Walt Hopkins will be hired as the next head coach of the New York Liberty, a person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press.

The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity Monday because no official announcement has been made. The Liberty have scheduled a news conference for Wednesday at Barclays Center, where the team will play its home games this season.

Previous coach Katie Smith’s contract wasn’t renewed after the season ended in September. The team has the first pick in the WNBA draft in April and most likely will select Oregon star guard Sabrina Ionescu.

This will be the first coaching hire for the Liberty under owner Joe Tsai’s group, which bought the team last year. Tsai also owns the Brooklyn Nets.

Hopkins has been an assistant for the Lynx for since 2017. Before his time with Minnesota, Hopkins was the academic coach at Cal. He previously was director of basketball operations and player development for the Tulsa Shock.

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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