How many WNBA players have coached in the NBA?

When Becky Hammon joined the Spurs in 2014, she became the first WNBA player to coach in the NBA. (Michael Gonzales/NBAE via Getty Images)

Former WNBA star Candice Dupree joined the NBA coaching ranks Friday.

The San Antonio Spurs brought on the seven-time All-Star as an assistant on Gregg Popovich’s staff, a position that provided a pipeline to success for Becky Hammon. Hammon worked as an assistant for the Spurs for eight seasons, then left earlier this year to lead the Las Vegas Aces to a WNBA title in her first season as a head coach.

When Hammon joined the Spurs in 2014, she became the first WNBA player to coach in the NBA. The number of WNBA players to follow her path remains slim but has grown over the last few years.

In total, 16 women have coached in the NBA. Dupree becomes the 10th current or former WNBA player to coach in the NBA, and she joins four other current or former WNBA players as active coaches in the men’s league.

WNBA players to coach in the NBA

Becky Hammon
San Antonio Spurs, 2014-22

After retiring in 2014 from the WNBA’s San Antonio Stars, Hammon joined the Spurs and became the first woman to work as a full-time assistant coach in any of North America’s four major men’s professional leagues.

She also became the first woman to serve as an acting head coach in NBA history when Popovich was ejected from a game in December 2020.

She left the Spurs to join the Aces, and she led the team to a 26-10 record and a WNBA championship in her debut season.

Nancy Lieberman
Sacramento Kings, 2015-17

Lieberman coached the WNBA’s Detroit Shock from 1998-2000. Later, she coached the Texas Legends of the NBA Developmental League from 2009-11, becoming the first woman to coach a men’s professional basketball team.

In 2015, she was hired by the Kings as an assistant coach, and she spent two seasons with Sacramento.

Jenny Boucek
Sacramento Kings, 2017-18
Dallas Mavericks, 2018-21
Indiana Pacers, 2021-present

Boucek spent 18 seasons as an assistant and head coach in the WNBA before making the switch to the NBA.

She joined the Kings as a player development coach in 2017, then became an assistant coach for the Dallas Mavericks in 2018. In 2021, she jumped to the Indiana Pacers with head coach Rick Carlisle, who had hired her to his Mavericks staff.

Kristi Toliver
Washington Wizards, 2018-20
Dallas Mavericks, 2021-present

An active player in the WNBA with the Los Angeles Sparks, Toliver also works as an assistant coach in the NBA. She started with the Wizards in 2018, during her time as a player for the Mystics, then switched to the Mavericks in 2021.

Niele Ivey
Memphis Grizzlies, 2019-20

Before she became the head coach of the Notre Dame women’s basketball team, she spent the 2019-20 NBA season as an assistant with the Grizzlies.

Kara Lawson
Boston Celtics, 2019-20

Like Ivey, Lawson coached for one season with the Celtics before joining the college ranks as the coach of the Duke women’s team.

Lindsey Harding
Philadelphia 76ers, 2019
Sacramento Kings, 2019-present

Harding started her coaching career as a player development coach for the 76ers, then flipped to fill the same role for the Sacramento Kings.

Teresa Weatherspoon
New Orleans Pelicans, 2020-present

The five-time WNBA All-Star served as the head coach of her alma mater Louisiana Tech’s women’s basketball program for six seasons. She was named a part-time player development coach in 2019, then became a full-time assistant coach in 2020.

Edniesha Curry
Portland Trail Blazers (2021-22)

Curry worked as an assistant coach for the women’s and then the men’s basketball teams at University of Maine before joining the Trail Blazers in 2021.

Candice Dupree
San Antonio Spurs (2022-present)

A 2014 WNBA champion with the Phoenix Mercury, participated in the NBA Assistant Coaches Program (ACP), created to expand the player-to-coach pipeline, and joined the Spurs in September.