Coaching roundup: Harding hired as Sixers scout; Tatham joins G League staff
Continuing the ongoing progress for female coaches, Lindsey Harding and Tamara Tatham took the next step in their coaching careers, with Tatham making history in the process.
ESPN.com’s Ramona Shelburne reported Harding is joining the Philadelphia 76ers as a full-time scout. Jenny Boucek is the only other former WNBA player to assume a scouting role for an NBA team.
“I would love to be in the front office and really understand how to put a team together,” Harding said of the move, per Shelburne. “I still love being on the floor and having the opportunity to coach. But I really just wanted to get my foot in the door.”
Harding was a star for the Duke Blue Devils before the Phoenix Mercury selected her first overall in the 2007 WNBA draft and subsequently traded her to the Minnesota Lynx. Harding played nine seasons in the WNBA, averaging 9.8 points and 4.0 assists.
Tatham, meanwhile, became the first Canadian woman on an NBA G League coaching staff when she accepted a mentor coaching role for Raptors 905, according to the Canadian Press (via Sportsnet).
“I saw that this morning, and I was like ‘Wow, that’s intense.’ But I’m excited about it,” Tatham said. “I’m not going to say I’m nervous, I’m not going to say I’m not nervous, but I’m going to say it’s a blessing because it’s not something that comes around every day.”
Tatham went undrafted after playing four years for the UMass Minutewomen. As a senior in 2006-07, she nearly averaged a double-double (12.8 points, 9.0 rebounds). Tatham helped the Canadian national team win gold in both the 2015 Pan American Games and FIBA Americas Championship for Women.
When it comes to female coaches in the men’s game, Becky Hammon commands the most attention, and rightfully so. The San Antonio Spurs promoted Hammon to lead assistant in June, and it’s seemingly a matter of time before she’s coaching an NBA team.
The more incremental moves matter just as much, though. True equality will be achieved when women occupy roles from top to bottom in an NBA organization, from the front office to the coaching staff.