The Philadelphia 76ers announced on Monday that Connor Johnson will be the coach of their G-League affiliate, the Delaware Blue Coats. Johnson spent last season as the Sixers Director of Player Development and Coaching Administration.
“Connor has been a staple of the 76ers’ coaching staff for the past four NBA seasons, taking on a key role in our player development efforts, while helping drive our culture forward,” said Blue Coats GM Elton Brand. “Player development, work ethic and culture are the core principles of our program. We know that Connor will strengthen the continuity between the 76ers and Blue Coats and we are excited to have one of the brightest young basketball minds at the helm as we enter a historic first season in Wilmington.”
Prior to serving as the organization's Director of Player Development and Coaching Administration, Johnson spent two seasons as their video coordinator. He also worked as a graduate assistant with Villanova men's basketball under head coach Jay Wright.
“I’m excited for the opportunity to serve as head coach of the Delaware Blue Coats,” Johnson said. “I look forward to building upon the success of the 76ers and establishing our program in the brand-new 76ers Fieldhouse in Wilmington. I would not have this opportunity if not for the support and mentorship of Coach Brown, something I will always be grateful for. I’m thrilled to remain a part of the 76ers family and cannot wait to get started.”
In November, the Sixers announced plans to build a state-of-the-art complex in Wilmington, Delawareto serve as the home to Philadelphia's G-League affiliate. It's set to open for the Blue Coats' 2018-19 season and is also described as a "beacon for youth sports in Delaware". There are already plans to host a plethora of youth leagues, including basketball (AAU, high school, travel teams), volleyball and soccer.
Sporting 76ers’ blue with red and white accents, the Blue Coats’ primary logo depicts famed Delawarean and Founding Father Caesar Rodney on his legendary horseback ride of 1776. Rodney, Delaware’s representative in the first Continental Congress, rode 80 miles from Wilmington to Philadelphia in a thunderstorm through the night in order to cast a tie-breaking vote for American Independence.