Eduardo Najera to Retire, Become D-League Head Coach

Twelve-year NBA veteran Eduardo Najera will retire and become head coach of the NBA D-League’s Texas Legends. The 36-year-old has no prior coaching experience, but will try to rise through the ranks under the watchful eye of Dallas Maverick executives Donnie Nelson and Del Harris. Najera was the first Mexican-born player to be drafted by an NBA team, and will become the first Mexican-born coach in either the NBA or the D-League. Via “Najera also will have an ownership stake in the Legends, sources say, and likewise receive a to-be-determined title working under Nelson in the Mavericks’ front office. Sources say Harris, who turned 75 in June, will return to his original role as Legends general manager and also mentor Najera as the 36-year-old makes the transition to coaching. Selected by the Houston Rockets on the Mavericks’ behalf with the 38th pick in the 2000 NBA draft, Najera played 12 seasons in the NBA, most recently with the Charlotte Bobcats. Earlier this summer, Najera had been cleared to resume his playing career after an elbow he absorbed in April from Milwaukee’s Jon Brockman resulted in a fractured frontal bone that required 12 screws and a mesh screen to be inserted into Najera’s forehead. But sources say Najera has decided that he wants to start his coaching career in earnest. Sources say Harris and Najera’s soon-to-be-finalized coaching staff will be charged with helping him adapt on the fly to his new job. Legends assistant coach and longtime NBA guard David Wesley recently left the organization to join the New Orleans Hornets’ broadcast team and fellow Legends assistant Scott Flemming was recently named head coach of India’s national team.”