Erin Phillips named Assistant Coach; Bridget Pettis retires from coaching
Arlington, TX – The Dallas Wings have finalized their coaching staff for the 2018 season under the leadership of Fred Williams, the team announced today. Williams enters his ninth season overall as a WNBA head coach, including the past two years guiding the Dallas Wings. The California native has led the organization to the WNBA playoffs twice in the past three seasons, including last year when a Dallas side featuring five rookies qualified for the post-season play as a seven seed.
Dallas Wings Director of Player & Franchise Development Erin Phillips has been named as assistant coach for the 2018 season. Phillips replaces Bridget Pettis, who has decided to retire from coaching. Phillips will join current assistant coach Taj McWilliams-Franklin in serving on head coach Fred Williams’ staff.
“I am extremely excited for this opportunity to work with and alongside Fred,” stated Phillips. “He is an amazing teacher with invaluable knowledge for the game and it’s a privilege to be able to learn from him day in and day out. I can’t thank him and Greg Bibb enough for providing me with this next step in my coaching career. The future of this young Dallas Wings team is incredibly bright and I know the best is yet to come.”
This will be Phillips’ first full-time coaching role after retiring last season. In May of 2017, she was named Director of Player and Franchise Development for the Wings, where she focused on player development and business initiatives for the team. The Australia native played in the WNBA for nine seasons becoming a key leader and mentor for players throughout the league. She is a two-time WNBA champion known to be a threat behind the three-point arc.
“We are excited to have Erin’s role with the Dallas Wings organization continue to evolve,” Wings President and CEO Greg Bibb stated. “Erin is a multi-time Olympian and WNBA Champion and her experience and knowledge will be a great asset to our young and talented club. We thank Bridget for all of her work on the team’s behalf and wish her the best of luck in her future endeavors.”
McWilliams-Franklin returns to the Wings bench to serve under Williams with a focus on post play. The two-time WNBA champion was a multi-time WNBA All-Star who ranks among the League’s all-time rebounding leaders.
“I’m really excited Taj and Erin will continue helping us develop our young team,” stated Williams. “They are experienced coaches that have won championships in our league as players and are now looking to pursue championships as coaches. They are the right fit for our organization, and tremendous leaders in the basketball community. I look forward to having them help us towards a winning season. Taj will focus more on scouting, defensive concepts and post player development, while Erin will continue to help us with guard play, player development and scouting.”
Pettis, a two-decade veteran of the WNBA as a player and coach departs the Wings after serving for four years on Williams’ staff. The Indiana native will return to her adopted home town of Phoenix, AZ to focus on several of her businesses while spending more time with her young family.
“I want to thank the WNBA, and all the organizations that I’ve had the opportunity to work with in this 21-year journey,” stated Pettis. “I also want to thank all the players, coaches and supporters past and present that planted their seed of excellence into making the league what it is today. Special thanks to the Dallas Wings organization for a wonderful opportunity in helping build the foundation of what is to come. I thank my family and friends for the support and most of all God for everything.”
The Dallas Wings will start their 2018 campaign next April returning a core group of players that includes 2017 WNBA Rookie of the Year Allisha Gray, three-time all-star guard and 2017 All-WNBA First Team member Skylar Diggins-Smith, along with 2016 and 2017 All-WNBA Rookie Team members Aerial Powers and Kaela Davis.