Becky Hammon Is The NBA’s Next Forward Leap In Diversity

The San Antonio Spurs continuing the tradition of adding a recently retired professional basketball player to their roster usually doesn't deserve much extra attention. However, in their own special way, the Spurs always find a way to make their interesting. 

Earlier in the offseason, the Spurs added Ettore Messina, who is one of the most prominent European coaches in hoops to their assistant coaching bench. The Spurs' nine international players on their championship roster is proof that they're the leaders in looking abroad for talent. But looking outside domestic borders is now old hat for Gregg Popovich, who has begun recruiting coaching minds from outside his own sex. 

On Tuesday, the Spurs added retiring San Antonio Star Becky Hammon as the second female bench assistant coach in league history and the first one hired full-time.

How did this come about? It didn't hurt that Hammon has been a San Antonio Star since 2007, but it wasn't until her 12th season was prematurely ended by a knee injury that Hammon began frequenting Spurs practices and developed a rapport with Popovich.

Unfortunately, while Hammon will go down in history as the history maker, Lisa Boyer will go down in history as the Claudia Colvin of female assistant coaches.

It's shocking that there hasn't been a single female assistant on an NBA bench since Boyer spent a year with the disastrous Cavaliers during the 2001-02 season, but between Natalie Nakasa serving on the Clippers summer league staff and Hammons' hiring, it appears progress is being made towards Whoopie Goldberg's premonition of a female head basketball or NBA coach.

It's another step forward for the NBA as a diversity utopia. Last week, the NBPA Players Union announced the hiring of Michelle Roberts as its next executive director. While the NFL fends off women's rights activists, the NBA is glowing in synergy emanating from its diverse workforce.