Philadelphia 76ers head coach Brett Brown has officially been announced as the new head coach of the Boomers.
Basketball Australia confirmed the NBA mentor’s appointment on Tuesday morning, after reports several weeks ago indicated Brown was likely to take over from Andrej Lemanis.
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Brown has a lengthy history with the Boomers, having last coached the team at the 2012 London Olympics, as well as a lengthy history with the NBL, dating back to the 1990s.
The 76ers coach set lofty ambitions for the side, declaring he would be aiming for a gold medal.
“The spirit of the country and the athletes of the country exemplify on a day-to-day basis the passion that is Australian sport,” Brown said.
“That passion is respected and recognised throughout the world and I’m very excited to be a part of that again.
“This is our mission and my message to our team: We’re going into the 2020 Olympics to win a gold medal.
“I understand the magnitude of this statement. I would feel irresponsible having any other goal but this.”
Luring NBA talent a key task for Brown
Having laid the foundations for the Boomers’ current era of success at the beginning of the decade, Brown will be tasked with securing the medal that has so far eluded Australian men’s basketball.
Getting the likes of Ben Simmons, Dante Exum, Thon Maker and Jonah Bolden in the green and gold will be a key task for Brown, adding much needed depth to a squad which has already proven itself against some of the world’s best.
Simmons hasn’t played for the Boomers since he was left out of the 2014 World Cup squad as an 18-year-old, while injuries have robbed Exum of opportunities to contribute.
Both Bolden and Maker skipped national duties in the NBA off-season, instead preferring to concentrate on their seasons with the Sixers and Detroit Pistons respectively.
A full strength Boomers squad would have the tools to compete with the best Europe has to offer - but whether they can match what will no doubt be a star-studded Team USA (compared to their World Cup side) remains to be seen.