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Long Island Nets name coaching staff

Long Island hired a new head coach with strong G League and international experience, then filled out the staff with veteran holdovers.

Grand Rapids Drive v Long Island Nets Photo by Michael Lawrence/NBAE via Getty Images

A three weeks after naming Mfon Udofia their new head coach, the Long Island Nets named Shawn Swords as associate head coach and Travis Voigt, Andrew Cobian and L.D. Williams as assistant coaches.

All four and Tevin Baskin, Long Island’s head video coordinator, had roles with the Nets G League affiliate last season. Udofia is a veteran G League and international coach, having been the head coach of the Nigerian national team in 2021. Last season, he was an assistant coach for the College Park Skyhawks, Atlanta’s affiliate.

So far, the Nets have signed forward Jalen Wilson, the 51st pick in the NBA Draft, and wing Armoni Brooks, an NBA vet who played well in the Summer League, to two-way contracts. They have one two-way remaining. Nets have also signed Patrick Gardner, an undrafted center out of Marist, to a training camp contract. Barring a surprise, Gardner seems destined for Long Island and a G League affiliate contract. Long Island also recently traded for D.J. Stewart, a 6’6’ wing who played for the Sioux City Skyforce, the Heat affiliate.

Swords enters his second season with Long Island after spending last season as an assistant coach. He previously spent 15 seasons (2007-22) as head coach at Laurentian University in Ontario, Canada, where he also played five collegiate seasons (1992-97). Prior to beginning his coaching career, he played professionally overseas for a decade (1997-2007) in France and Italy and on Team Canada, including playing for his country at 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney, Australia.

Voigt enters his second season as an assistant coach with Long Island. He spent the 2021-22 season as director of basketball operations with the NBA G League’s Sioux Falls Skyforce. He originally joined the Skyforce staff ahead of the 2019-20 season as a basketball operations assistant and served in the same role the following season. Voigt previously spent two seasons (2017-19) overseas as a player development coach for the Shanxi Flame, Shaanxi Wolves and the Hebei Win Power in China. Prior to beginning his career in basketball operations and player development, he played four collegiate seasons (2014-18) at North Central University.

Cobian will enter his third season with the LI Nets and his first as an assistant coach. He originally joined the Long Island staff ahead of the 2021-22 season as an assistant video coordinator and served in the same role the following season with added player development responsibilities. Prior to working for the Nets, Cobian spent three seasons (2016-19) as Hofstra University’s video coordinator and two seasons (2019-21) as the Pride’s director of player development. He also spent four seasons (2011-15) at the New York Institute of Technology as an assistant coach. Prior to coaching, Cobian played four collegiate seasons (2007-11) at Centenary College and later earned a master’s degree in media and communications from Pace University.

Williams joins Long Island as an assistant coach after spending the last two seasons (2021-23) as a player development and video assistant with the Brooklyn Nets. He also spent time during the 2013-14 season as a video coordinator at Winthrop University while in the midst of his playing career. Williams played 11 professional seasons (2010-21) and spent time overseas in Finland, France, Japan and Slovenia in addition to playing five seasons in the NBA G League with the Springfield Armor (2010-12, 2013-14), Grand Rapids Drive (2014-15) and Fort Wayne Mad Ants (2015-16). He was originally selected by Springfield with the 28th overall pick in the 2010 NBA G League Draft following four collegiate seasons (2006-10) at Wake Forest, where he earned ACC All-Defensive Team honors in both his junior and senior seasons.

Baskin rejoins Long Island as head player development and video coordinator after spending last season as assistant player development and video coordinator.