Lakers Great Michael Cooper Diagnosed With Tongue Cancer

by July 22, 2014

Michael Cooper, current WNBA head coach of the Atlanta Dream, and formerly a star on the great Los Angeles Lakers teams of the 1980s, is expected to make a full recovery from early stage tongue cancer. Coop will take a temporary medical leave from the Dream while undergoing treatment. From the press release:

Cooper will undergo a surgical procedure this week at Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University in Atlanta. Typical recovery time for the procedure is two weeks. A full recovery is anticipated following the surgical procedure. During Cooper’s absence from the team, assistant coach Karleen Thompson will assume head coaching duties. Per team policy, no further details will be disclosed.


“The doctors and staff at Emory have been tremendous, and I know I’m in good hands,” said Cooper. “I’m fortunate that my condition was diagnosed early, and this episode illustrates the importance of screening and early detection. I know the team will be in good hands with Coach Thompson at the helm during my absence, and I look forward to returning to the court soon.”