ATLANTA (AP) — The Atlanta Dream have hired Fred Williams as its new head coach and general manager, replacing Marynell Meadors.
The Dream announced Monday that Williams will immediately replace Meadors, who helped lead the U.S. Olympic women’s basketball team to a gold medal as an assistant coach on the national staff earlier this month.
Meadors was named WNBA coach of the year in 2009 after she lead the Dream to the second-biggest one year turnaround in league history. The Dream followed up their four-win 2008 inaugural campaign with 18 victories and a playoff berth.
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Meadors also led the Dream to consecutive WNBA Finals appearances in 2010 and 2011.
This season, the Dream are currently third in the Eastern Conference with a 12-12 record.
“As a team, we are unified in our drive to build on what we’ve achieved in our first five years,” Williams said in a release from the team. “We want to acknowledge the strong contribution that Marynell Meadors made to this organization. Our franchise will continue to build on the tradition of speed, scoring and tough defense that has resulted in back-to-back Eastern Conference championships.”
Williams has been with the Dream since 2008 after he spent 10 years coaching at the University of Southern California and served as an advance scout for the NBA’s Sacramento Kings and the Utah Jazz.
“Coach Williams bring a wealth of experience, a strong sense of teamwork, and demonstrated commitment to the role of head coach and general manager,” Dream co-owners Mary Brock and Kelly Loeffler said in the release. “We have tremendous respect for her contribution to this sport and wish Coach Meadors the very best in her future endeavors.”
First-year assistant Joe Ciampi will continue in his role under Williams.