Portland Trail Blazers add 14 members to their staff


Portland Trail Blazers general manager Joe Cronin on Tuesday announced the addition of 14 new recruits to the basketball operations staff, bolstering the organization a week before the opening of training camp in Santa Barbara, Utah. California.


Jonas Herscu: Herscu joins as an assistant coach after spending the last three seasons with Sacramento. Herscu started with the Kings as an advanced scout in 2019 before becoming an assistant coach in 2021. Herscu spent three seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers before joining the Kings. He worked for the Lakers as an advanced scout and player development assistant in 2018-19, and as an assistant video coordinator 2016-18.

David Adkins: Adkins, who has 29 years of coaching and player development experience, joins as director of player development. Adkins spent the 2021-22 season in Los Angeles as a player development coach for the Clippers and served as the top assistant for G League team affiliate the Agua Caliente Clippers. Prior to that, Adkins spent seven seasons with the Washington Wizards as an assistant coach and director of player development.

Tina Thompson: Thompson is entering his first season as a scout for the Trail Blazers after serving as head coach of the Virginia Cavaliers women’s basketball team from 2018-2022. Thompson, a member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, has been four one-time WNBA champion with the Houston Comets, nine-time WNBA All-Star and eight-time All-WNBA Honoree. The former USC star also won gold medals with Team USA at the 2004 and 2008 Olympics.

Dale Boyd: Boyd will be an assistant strength coach for the Blazers. Boyd spent the 2021-22 season as assistant strength and conditioning coach and sports scientist for Overtime Elite after previously interning with P3 in Atlanta. Boyd also worked in the G League and spent the 2019-20 season as an assistant strength and conditioning coach for the Oregon men’s basketball program.

Swenge Loman: Lomani joined the Blazers team in March as an international scout. Originally from France, he played in the minor leagues of France. Lomani became an agent at the age of 21 and spent the next 13 years mentoring and developing players on and off the basketball and football court.

Jason Luhnow: Luhnow is entering his first season as a full-time assistant video coordinator after joining the Trail Blazers as a video intern in January. Luhnow played basketball at Lake Oswego High School and Lewis and Clark College. He also played for the Woodville Warriors of the National Basketball League One division in Australia.

Nico Matthew: Mathieu joins the staff as an international scout after working as a consultant for the San Antonio Spurs. The French native started his scouting career working independently for several French clubs from 2014.

Jacob Mooallem: Mooallem will be the team’s analytical coach. Mooallem has spent the past two seasons as an assistant coach for the New Zealand Breakers of the National Basketball League and previously worked as a video scout at DraftExpress, working closely with current Blazers assistant general manager Mike Schmitz. The West Palm Beach, Florida native served as chief video director at Indiana University, graduating in 2020.

Catherine Overman: Overman is entering his first season as a senior data scientist in research and development. Overman earned his Ph.D. in Physics from Emory University in 2022, where she did her research on modeling animal behavior patterns, particularly with fruit flies. Before that, she graduated from the University of Augusta, with a double major in mathematics and physics.

Juanita Samborski: Samborski will work as a software developer with research and development. She has extensive experience as a freelance developer, creating functional and intuitive user interfaces for clients in a variety of fields. She graduated from the University of Washington with a certificate in full stack development and earned a Bachelor of Arts from Texas Tech University.

Ikenna Smart: Smart is a new video coordinator assistant. Smart most recently worked with the Alabama men’s basketball program as a graduate assistant from 2020-2022. There he supported the defensive coordinator and analysis team while assisting with player development. Smart played college basketball for Wake Forest in 2018-19 as a grad transfer and earned a master’s degree in liberal studies with a concentration in global studies. Before transferring to Wake Forest, Smart spent four seasons at the University at Buffalo.

Micha Smith: Black-smith joins the team as an assistant athletic trainer after spending last season as head athletic trainer for the Wisconsin Herd of the G League. He is a Certified Athletic Trainer (ATC) in addition to holding credentials as a Corrective Exercise Specialist (CES) and Performance Enhancement Specialist (PES). Smith holds a Master of Science in Health Care Administration from LeTourneau and a Master of Science in Athletic Rehabilitation and Sports Psychology from the University of California, Pennsylvania.

Trevor Smith: Smith becomes new to the team ssoftware engineer and will work with the research and development group on architecture tools and data processes, helping to develop internal systems to support workflows and decision making. He graduated from Oregon with additional certifications from immersion software engineering programs.

Taylor Walden: Walden joined the Blazers in March as head of performance science. Walden brings a decade of experience tracking and analyzing performance data to Portland’s health and performance staff. She has spent the past five years working as a player health operations manager in the NBA league office. Prior to that, Walden spent five years working for the United States Olympic Committee in various sports medicine roles. Originally from Southern California, Walden graduated from Pace University where she played football.

— Aaron Fentress | [email protected] | @AaronJFentress (Twitter), @AaronJFentress (Instagram), @AaronFentress (Facebook).

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