The Dallas Mavericks continue to round out their coaching staff. Rick Carlisle resigned after the team’s second straight first-round playoff exit, and Hall of Fame point guard Jason Kidd was selected as his replacement. Carlisle took the head job in Indiana and his top assistant, Jamahl Mosley, became the Magic’s head coach. Other assistants followed Carlisle to Pacers leaving Kidd searching for a staff.
The Mavericks landed Igor Kokoskov to fill one of the top assistant roles. They had to make a deal with Fenerbahce to let the veteran coach out of his contract. Kokoskov was the head coach of the Phoenix Suns for one season, and he has been an NBA assistant for 19 years and seven different teams. The 49-year-old brings a wealth of experience to Dallas.
Kokoskov struggled in his one season as the Suns head coach, but he will make a massive impact for the Mavericks next season. Here is a look at why the veteran is going to be a key part of their organization.
Why Igor Kokoskov will play a key role for the Dallas Mavericks
Kokoskov is no stranger to coaching on a winning team. He won a championship with the Detroit Pistons in 2004. Kokoskov has made the postseason eight times in his 19 seasons as an NBA assistant. The 49-year-old was the head coach for the Slovenian National Team when they won EuroBasket in 2017.
Kokoskov worked with Luka Doncic in that tournament. He has a positive relationship with the Dallas Mavericks superstar, which will be important. Jamahl Mosley was extremely close with Doncic. Fans saw them working out on the floor before every game. Mosley is now the head coach in Orlando with Kokoskov being an important confidant for Luka on Kidd’s staff.
The new Mavs assistant has a reputation for helping players develop. He has received praise for helping develop Donovan Mitchell and Mikal Bridges while working with Ricky Rubio during his career year in Utah. Kokoskov could play a key role in getting the best out of Doncic, Jalen Brunson, and Josh Green during his time with the Mavericks.
The 49-year-old is known as an offensive specialist. He will play a key role in getting the Mavs moving off the ball more as they look to climb back atop the league in offensive rating. Kokoskov got the most out of a teenage Luka Doncic for Slovenia. Expect him to do the same with the superstar in Dallas. It will be interesting to see how the offense changes under Kidd and Kokoskov. Expect new wrinkles as they look to play to the rosters strengths.
The Dallas Mavericks landing Igor Kokoskov is massive. The veteran coach will improve the team’s offense, be an important voice in unlocking Luka, and bring plenty of experience to the organization. The Mavs want to jump into title contention next season, and adding an assistant that has been there before is significant. Stay tuned to see what impact Kokoskov has in Dallas.