Pistons hire Darrell Walker, Pat Sullivan and Harold Ellis as assistant coaches
Detroit Pistons President of Basketball Operations Joe Dumars announced today that the team has signed Darrell Walker, Pat Sullivan and Harold Ellis as assistant coaches. Per team policy, terms of the contracts were not disclosed.
Walker enters his first season as a coach with the Pistons after serving as an assistant coach with the New Orleans Hornets since 2004-05. He brings the experience of two stints as an NBA head coach and 10 seasons as a player to Michael Curry’s staff. Walker began his coaching career when he served as an assistant coach in Toronto during the Raptors’ 1995-96 inaugural season. He was promoted to head coach the day after the end of the regular-season that year and led the Raptors to a 30-52 mark in 1996-97. Walker resigned as head coach of the Raptors on February 13, 1998. During the 1999-00 season, Walker pulled off a rare hat trick when he served as head coach for three different franchises. He began the season with the Rockford Lightning of the Continental Basketball Association before being named head coach of the Washington Wizards on Jan. 29. He guided the Wizards to a 15-23 record and was named the team’s director of player personnel in May. On July 14, he stepped in once again as an interim head coach, this time with the WNBA’s Washington Mystics, who finished the season with a 5-7 record and reached the WNBA Playoffs for the first time. A former NBA player, Walker was drafted out of Arkansas by the New York Knicks in the first round (12th overall) of the 1983 NBA Draft. In 10 NBA seasons, he averaged 8.9 points, 4.6 assists and 1.51 steals in 720 games with New York, Denver, Washington, Detroit and Chicago.
Sullivan re-joins the Pistons staff after spending the last three seasons as an assistant coach with the New Jersey Nets. The North Carolina graduate served as assistant coach/video coordinator for the Pistons during the 2003-04 NBA Championship season and was promoted to the bench during the 2004-05 campaign. Sullivan has more than a decade of basketball experience both as a player and coach. As a player at North Carolina, he played in three NCAA Final Fours (1991, 1993 and 1995), which included a NCAA Championship in 1993, and coached in three Final Fours as an assistant coach at UNC. He left the Tar Heels in 2001 and moved to North Carolina-Wilmington, where he was an assistant coach from 2001-03.
Ellis enters his first year with the Pistons after serving as Minor League Coordinator for the Atlanta Hawks for the last six seasons. Prior to joining Atlanta, Ellis was an assistant coach on the inaugural staff of the NBA Development League’s Roanoke Dazzle in 2001-02. A former pro player in four leagues (the NBA, Continental Basketball Association, U.S. Basketball League and Greece), he is a 1992 graduate of Morehouse College. Ellis averaged 5.8 points in three NBA seasons with the L.A. Clippers (1993-94 and ’94-95), where he was a teammate of Hall-of-Famer Dominique Wilkins, and Denver Nuggets. In 2006, Ellis coached the Rome (GA) Gladiators of the World Basketball Association (WBA) to their second consecutive league title. He earned coach of the year honors in the process for the second straight time and led the club to a 42-6 mark during that span. Ellis was also the team’s general manager.