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Archive for Wednesday, January 4, 2006

Sonics fire Weiss, promote Hill

Ex-Kansas University assistant to lead Seattle’s NBA team

January 4, 2006

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— Former Kansas University basketball assistant Bob Hill will coach the Seattle SuperSonics for at least the remainder of the season.

The Sonics on Tuesday fired coach Bob Weiss, who directed the team to a 13-17 record to open the season.

Hill, who coached under Ted Owens and Larry Brown at KU from 1977 to '85, learned at breakfast he'd been promoted from assistant to head coach.

He said there would be significant changes, including possible starting-lineup moves. This will be his fourth head-coaching job, with previous stops in Indiana, New York and San Antonio, where he had the most success.

From 1994 to 1996, Hill compiled a 124-58 record with the Spurs, winning two division titles and advancing to the 1995 Western Conference finals before losing to Houston. Hill has a 257-212 overall record.

"I told the players that when they signed that contract they were agreeing that they would cooperate with whatever we wanted to do," Hill said. "I expect them to play hard. I'm not going to coach effort, but I want them to play hard and play good."

Hill's most recent head-coaching job was at Fordham University from 1999 to 2002. He's also served as an assistant with the Knicks and Orlando Magic.

"I don't know what we can do," Hill said. "I think it's a good team. I think we can be a good team. How good? I don't know."

Ex-Jayhawk Nick Collison is a member of the Sonics.

Hill graduated from Bowling Green State University in 1971 with a bachelor's degree in physical education and earned a master's degree in secondary education a year later. Hill and his wife of 31 years, Pam, are the parents of sons Cameron, Christopher and Casey.

The 63-year-old Weiss previously coached Atlanta, San Antonio and the Los Angeles Clippers and has an overall record of 223-299.

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