Former NBA coach coming to RMI in January

A former NBA coach will be coming to Majuro and Ebeye in early January to run basketball clinics and speak to local students about the value of sports. Tom Newell, who was an assistant coach with the Seattle Supersonics, New Jersey Nets and the Dallas Mavericks, will visit the RMI from January 3-14.

He is sponsored by the US State Department’s Sports Ambassador program. The US Embassy in Majuro is coordinating the visit together with the National Olympic Committee, the Marshall Islands Basketball Federation and other basketball-related programs.

Coach Newell is also a representative of the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) and works as one of their Expert Instructors under the International Olympic Committee Solidarity program.

The NOC and MIBF have requested that Coach Newell supervise a Level Two coach training program in Majuro, which would build on a series of earlier Level One trainings that have been provided over the past several years. The possibility of a referee update course is also on the table. He will also run a Level One coaching course for coaches on Ebeye, as well as run school/community clinics in both islands.

“Our real need is Level Two coaching and/or certification for referees and officials,” said NOC Secretary General Terry Sasser. In communication with the NOC, Coach Newell has indicated his interest in conducting a Level Two course, and FIBA Oceania has given its support for the Level Two program.

The US Embassy is sponsoring Coach Newell’s visit, and the NOC has offered to support training-related costs locally.

Coach Newell brings many years experience to his coaching training programs. In addition to his experience in the NBA, Coach Newell coached the Japan national basketball team in 2000 and has been active in coaching in China, other parts of Asia and Europe.

Currently, as a State Department Sports Ambassador, he travels around the world teaching coaches and players about the game of basketball.


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