SAN ANTONIO — The San Antonio Spurs made history Wednesday in a loss to the Los Angeles Lakers after Becky Hammon took over coaching duties to become the first woman to lead a team during an NBA game. She replaced head coach Greg Popovich, who was ejected early in the second quarter.
Popovich was ejected by official Tony Brown with 3:56 left in the second quarter. Popovich had walked onto the court and yelled at Brown when there was no call on DeMar DeRozan and a subsequent layup attempt by Drew Eubanks.
Hammon, the league’s first female assistant coach, took over the team’s timeouts and walked courtside after Popovich’s ejection. The Spurs ultimately lost 121-107 as LeBron James chipped in 26 points and five rebounds for the Lakers.
Hammon, a former three-time All-American at Colorado State, played in the WNBA for the New York Liberty and San Antonio Stars before retiring and joining Popovich’s staff in 2014.
She has previously led the Spurs Summer League Team, during scrimmages leading up to the league’s restart last season and during an exhibition game against the Milwaukee Bucks, CBS News reported.
Spurs legend Tim Duncan led the team last season when Popovich had to leave for personal reasons. Duncan did not return as an assistant coach this season.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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