(Image courtesy of Seattle Storm twitter)
The Seattle Storm and new head coach Noelle Quinn have agreed on a multi-year contract extension to remain with the team. Quinn took over as head coach on May 30th when then-coach Dan Hughes announced his immediate retirement due to medical issues. Quinn has kept the Storm steady in her early games at the helm, and is the logical choice for the team going forward.
“I would like to thank the Storm owners and management for entrusting me with the opportunity to continue to lead such a talented group of women,” Quinn said in a team-issued release Thursday. “Over my career, I’ve been blessed to play for and coach alongside some of the best coaches in our game which has helped prepare me for this position.”
Quinn joined Seattle’s staff in 2019 as an assistant coach. She is the first Black head coach in Storm history. Since taking over, Quinn has led Seattle to a 10-4 record, as well as clinching a berth in the inaugural Commissioner Cup final. Seattle will take on the Connecticut Sun in the head to head matchup on August 12th. The total Commissioner’s Cup prize pool is $500,000. Members of the winning team will earn $30,000 per player, while those on the runner-up team will have an opportunity to make $10,000 per player. An additional $5,000 will be awarded to the MVP of the Commissioner’s Cup Championship Game.
Quinn’s leadership has improved the Storm’s defense; before she took over, they were getting by on offense alone, and were ranked tenth in the league in points allowed. Seattle has upped their game on the defensive end, and are now ranked third in the WNBA by the same metric, allowing only about 79 points per game.
Quinn is the only player in WNBA history to win a championship both as a player and a coach; She was a player one the Storm’s 2018 title run, as well as an associate coach when they won it all again in 2020. Before her coaching career began, Quinn played 12 years in the WNBA for the Minnesota Lynx, Washington Mystics, Los Angeles Sparks, Phoenix Mercury, and the Seattle Storm. In her 12 seasons, Quinn scored over 1,800 points, grabbed over 1,000 rebounds, and dished out 878 assists.
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