Hubert Jude “Hubie” Brown, popularly known as Hubie Brown is a retired American basketball coach, who currently serves as a television analyst. Previously, Brown served as the head coach for the Atlanta Hawks, New York Knicks, and Memphis Grizzlies of the National Basketball Association (NBA). Brown recently signed a deal with ESPN and will work as an analyst on ESPN's 'NBA Sunday Showcase' on ABC.
Hubie Brown played college basketball at Niagara University, graduating in 1955 with a degree in education. After leaving Niagara, Brown joined the U.S. Army where he joined the Army's basketball team. After being honorably discharged in 1958, Brown briefly played for the Rochester Rockies of the Eastern Professional Basketball League (the forerunner to the Continental Basketball Association). He averaged 13.8 points per game in his brief stint as a pro and was an excellent defender as a player.
Brown's defensive mentality would carry on into his coaching career, which began in 1955 at St. Mary's High School in Little Falls, New York where he coached both basketball and baseball. He spent nine years at the high school level before becoming an assistant coach for one season at the College of William and Mary in 1968. The following season, Brown joined Duke University as an assistant coach. Brown coached at Duke until 1972, when he joined the NBA as an assistant coach for the Milwaukee Bucks under Larry Costello.
After two seasons in the NBA, Brown was given his first professional-level head coaching opportunity - the head coach position with the Kentucky Colonels of the ABA. Brown led the Colonels to their only ABA Championship in 1975 before the ABA-NBA merger in 1976 when the Colonels franchise folded.
Brown then rejoined the NBA as head coach of the Atlanta Hawks, going 31-51 in his first season with the Hawks. But by the 1977-78 season, the Hawks had rebounded into a .500 team, finishing 41-41 and earning Coach of the Year honors for Brown. Brown continued to coach the Hawks, leading them to a Central Division Title in the 1979-80 season, before joining the New York Knicks in 1982. He stayed with the Knicks until he was fired in 1986 after starting the season 4-12.
Hubie Brown then turned to the broadcasting booth, becoming the lead basketball analyst for CBS in 1988. He also worked on the local broadcasts for the Philadelphia 76ers and the Detroit Pistons before joining TNT in the early 1990s. Brown continued anchoring TNT's basketball coverage through the 2001-02 season.
But during the 2002-03 season, Brown was again tapped to be a head coach in the NBA again, this time by Jerry West with the Memphis Grizzlies, who fired coach Sidney Lowe after an 0-8 start. The Grizzlies' choice of Brown was quite controversial at the time as Hubie Brown was the oldest coach in the NBA at the time, at the age of 69.
Brown finished the season with a 28-46 record with the team. However, the team underwent a complete turnaround for the 2003-04 season, finishing 50-32 and making the playoffs for the first time in team history. Brown was again named the NBA's Coach of the Year.
That year, Brown also signed with ABC as their top NBA analyst, working alongside Al Michaels on some regular-season and playoff games, including the NBA Finals.
In 2005, he was enshrined in the Basketball Hall of Fame as a contributor.
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