Avery Johnson Suits Up for ESPN Analyst Gig

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ESPN Thursday said former NBA player and coach Avery Johnson will join the network’s NBA Shootaround pregame show as an analyst throughout the 2008-09 season.

Johnson, who played for 16 seasons and won an NBA championship playing guard for the San Antonio Spurs in 1999, most recently served as head coach of the Dallas Mavericks from 2004-2008.

Johnson will join host Stuart Scott and analyst Bill Walton before ESPN NBA broadcasts throughout the regular season and through the playoffs. He will also contribute to ABC’s GMC NBA Countdown.

“Avery has excelled in every professional endeavor and we know his success will carry over to his on-air role,” Norby Williamson, ESPN’s executive vice president of production, said in a statement. “His experience and passion for the game will resonate with our fans.”

Johnson in 2007 became the fastest coach to reach 150 wins and was named the NBA Coach of the Year in 2006 when his Mavericks advanced to the NBA Finals before falling to the Miami Heat.

Mavericks owner and HDNet founder Mark Cuban fired Johnson in April after the team was unceremoniously bounced from the playoffs in the first round for the second consecutive season.

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