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B&B: Run towards pressure and expectations

THE most challenging gig in elite coaching? Inheriting a defending champion. And that is exactly what Chris Lucas is faced with as the new head coach of WNBL champion Melbourne Boomers, largely why Brad Rosen and I were keen to interview him for this week's Brad&Boti podcast. 

Lucas has been involved in Adelaide Lightning playoff runs, sat alongside Carrie Graf as Canberra Capitals claimed the crown, then rejuvenated Townsville Fire from a basket case to a multiple champion.

When Lightning - who he also took to a Grand Final Series - this season decided to "go in a different direction", who snapped him up?

The reigning champions, no less.

It speaks to how Lucas is viewed across the board in Australian basketball after being an Opals assistant at the Athens Olympic Games in 2004 and again with Sandy Brondello in 2018 when the national team won Silver at the FIBA World Cup in Tenerife, Spain.

A coaching "lifer", hear how he was drawn to basketball from a promising career as a swimmer and then his transition first from playing to coaching, and then from coaching men to coaching women.

It wasn't the smoothest of transitions but Lucas now is recognised as a winner wherever he goes.

In 2017, as head coach of the Emerging Opals, he coached the Australian team to the Gold Medal at the World University Games in Japan before racing home prematurely to face a life-threatening cancer surgery.

The WNBL season tips off tonight and he gives us some insights into what the season holds, while also giving us his thoughts on Steph Talbot, Rachael Sporn, Michele Timms, Rachael McCully, Suzy Batkovic and Kristi Harrower.

It's a compelling interview before Brad and I talk WNBL, NBL, who's hot, a Rosen Rattler, a Nagy Nasty - truly, it's a basketball bonanza! 

All this and more can be accessed by hitting this link, or go to Spotify or Apple Podcasts to find it there if you prefer.

And tonight (Wednesday), tune in to ESPN (or KAYO) at 9pm SA time or 930 AEDT to watch Melbourne take on the Lynx in Perth.

Nov 2

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