Steve Kerr speaks after being named as Phoenix Suns President of Basketball Operations and General Manager during a news conference in Phoenix, Arizona in this file photo taken June 6, 2007. Photo by Rick Scuteri, Reuters.
OAKLAND - Steve Kerr, who won three of his five NBA titles as a Chicago Bulls teammate of Michael Jordan, was named Monday as the new coach of the Golden State Warriors.
The 48-year-old Lebanon-born American will replace Mark Jackson, who was fired after the Warriors lost to the Los Angeles Clippers in the first round of the NBA playoffs.
The deal is reportedly worth $25 million over five years.
"I'm really excited about the unique opportunity to coach a very talented team and work for this committed management group," Kerr said.
"The Warriors, from top to bottom, have become one of the marquee organizations in the NBA in recent years. I'm looking forward to becoming part of that environment and building upon the success of the last two seasons."
Kerr, who has served as an NBA television commentator for most of the years since he retired in 2003, was also seen as a contender for the vacant coaching post of the New York Knicks, whose team president since March has been Phil Jackson, Kerr's former coach with the Bulls and winner of a record 11 NBA titles as a coach.
But Kerr, who has no coaching experience, decided to take over the Warriors after a meeting with chief executive Joe Lacob and general manager Bob Myers last week.
"The fact that he played for several of the greatest coaches in the history of the game -- including Phil Jackson and Gregg Popovich -- will serve him well, as will the many nuances that he learned from performing on the brightest stage during his incredibly successful, championship-filled career," Myers said.
Kerr, who spent three seasons as general manager of the Phoenix Suns between TV analyst stints, was taken in the second round of the 1988 NBA Draft by Phoenix. He aqveraged 6.0 points a game over 15 seasons with the Suns, Bulls, Cleveland, Orlando, San Antonio and Portland.
Kerr won NBA crowns with the Bulls in 1996, 1997 and 1998 and then joined San Antonio to help the Spurs captured the 1999 NBA title as well as another in 2003.
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