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BREAKING: Bobcats hire Clifford as next head coach

May 27, 2013

(O-N-E photo by Seth Mabry)

The Charlotte Bobcats have reached an agreement with Steve Clifford to become their next head coach, according to sources.

Clifford, a Los Angeles Lakers assistant coach last season under Mike D'Antoni, takes over the reins of the team from Mike Dunlap, who was fired after one year.

Clifford becomes the sixth head coach in franchise history, joining Bernie Bickerstaff (2004-07), Sam Vincent (2007-08), Larry Brown (2008-10) and Paul Silas (2010-12) and Dunlap (2013).

The Bobcats finished with a 21-61 record in Dunlap's lone season at the helm — tied for the worst record in the league with the Orlando Magic.

According to multiple media reports, Clifford's deal is for two years with a third-year team option and worth $6 million.

Clifford has spent more than a decade as an NBA assistant, including stints with the Lakers (2012), Magic (2007-11), Houston Rockets (2003-06) and New York Knicks (2001-02).

He started with the Knicks as an advanced scout in 2000.

Clifford also has a plethora of college coaching experience at Adelphi University (N.Y.), but he also has ties to North Carolina area as an East Carolina University assistant basketball coach in 1999.

He also coached collegiately at St. Anselm's College (N.H.), Fairfield University, Boston University and Siena College.

Clifford is a graduate of the University of Maine at Farmington, where he played basketball for four years before graduating with a degree in special education.

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