Former University of Minnesota star Bobby Jackson will replace Timberwolves player development coach David Adelman, who was promoted to an assistant’s role under his father Rick Adelman, the team announced Monday. Jackson returns to the Twin Cities after four seasons on the Sacramento coaching staff.
Before that, he played for six different NBA teams during a 12-year NBA career that included a two-year stint with the Timberwolves from 1998 to 2000.
But long-tenured Minneapolis sports fans remember most his remarkable 1997 collegiate season in which he led the Golden Gophers to the Final Four.
“We are bringing a Minnesota basketball icon back to our state,” president of basketball operations Flip Saunders said in a statement.
A 6-foot-1, 185-pound point guard originally from North Carolina, Jackson averaged 15.3 points, 6.1 rebounds and four assists per game. During Minnesota’s 1997 March Madness run, he scored 36 points in a double-overtime win against Clemson.
That spring, he landed in Denver as part of a draft-day trade between the Seattle Supersonics and Denver Nuggets. He was dealt to Minnesota following his rookie season and went on to suit up for Sacramento, Memphis, New Orleans and Houston.
In 2002-03, he won the NBA’s sixth man award.
His coach that season, and during his entire five-year tenure with the Kings: Rick Adelman.
“Bobby has the respect of players around our league and did a great job working with the young Kings players this past season,” Saunders said. “Both Rick Adelman and I are very familiar with Bobby and are excited to have him on our coaching staff.”
Jackson worked in a regional scouting and player development capacity for one year with the Kings before becoming an assistant coach. He’ll focus specifically on player development with the Timberwolves after David Adelman’s promotion.
The head coach’s son spent the past two seasons as a player development coach and headed up Minnesota’s NBA Summer League teams. As reported earlier this offseason, he takes the place of Bill Bayno, who took a job on the Toronto Raptors coaching staff.
David Adelman coached high school hoops in Oregon before joining his dad’s staff.
“David is a bright young coach,” Saunders said, “and has demonstrated the past two years that he is ready to take on additional responsibilities.”
The Timberwolves opted not to exercise their option on fellow player development coach Shawn Respert’s contract for 2013-14.