The Basketball Podcast: EP201 with Noelle Quinn on WNBA Coaching

RELEASE DATE : 02/02/2022

In this week’s coaching conversation, Seattle Storm head coach Noelle Quinn joins the Basketball Podcast to share insights on transition from playing to coach, and the Seattle Storm offensive concepts.

Noelle Quinn joined the Storm coaching staff in 2019 following her first championship as a player in 2018 with the storm. Quinn has won a WNBA championship as a player and coach, and has also been recently named an assistant coach with the Canadian National Women’s Team, as well as previously serving as the head coach of the girls’ basketball team at Bishop Montgomery High School during the WNBA offseason

For the 2020 season, Storm head coach Dan Hughes was forced to sit out the season for medical reasons. Gary Kloppenburg became head coach for the season, and Quinn was promoted to associate head coach, where she concentrated on the offense, while Kloppenburg focused on the defense. Seattle won the 2020 WNBA championship.

Since 2016, Noelle Quinn has been the head coach of the girls’ basketball team at Bishop Montgomery High School during the WNBA offseason. She was a star there, having led the Lady Knights to four California state championships, three regional championships, and three division championships. She was also a McDonald’s All-American and is the only player in school history to have had her jersey retired.

As a player, Noelle Quinn attended college at UCLA and graduated in 2007. Following her collegiate career, she was selected 4th overall in the 2007 WNBA Draft by the Minnesota Lynx. Quinn played for many WNBA teams including the Minnesota Lynx, Los Angeles Sparks, Washington Mystics, Phoenix Mercury and the Seattle Storm and for Botaş SK of the Turkish Women’s Basketball League.

Noelle Quinn Image

Listen Here:

Noelle Quinn Coach Quotes:

“The interesting part about my journey as a coach is like, I didn’t really see it, but others saw it within me.”

“We’re here in this life to be a light to other people; we’re here to have some type of impact.

“When I cross paths with someone, I want that person to leave better by being in my presence in my space, because I’ve enlightened them, I’ve empowered them, I’ve brightened their day.”

“One thing that I do try to remember is what did I like, as a player? What do we feel as a group? What are we talking about in a locker room when situations arise?”

“I give that freedom because, like I said, as coaches, sometimes we get in the way . . it’s okay to let [the players] lead and to empower that leadership. Because at the end of the day, we all trust each other. At the end of the day, we’re all trying to win the games.”

“I kind of point them in the direction of who they should be modeling themselves after . . there is a learning curve that has to occur right there . .. And so with younger players, I think just understanding there is a trajectory, and there’s a steady climb to where you want to be, it’s not gonna happen on day one, and it’s not going to happen in training camp.”

“You are going to get tired, you’re going to get frustrated, mental fatigue is going to set in, it is going to happen. It’s happened to all of us. But what is going to push you through those moments is your preparation as a professional.”

“In transition, it becomes just running your lane hard. Running it hard, running it often, and early. Kicking the ball ahead is huge. We like to run quick drag screens, just getting into actions faster, quicker, so that the defense can’t set up.”

“My evolution is just getting well versed in the nuances of offenses that I like, the offenses in Europe, offenses in the NBA, and how can I now fine tune that for the Seattle Storm? And then from a leadership standpoint, how can I continue to be confident and strong, prepared and strategic with our roster.”

Noelle Quinn Breakdown:

1:00 – Player to Coach Transition
3:00 – Appreciation from Coaching
5:00 – Heart to Heart Space
9:00 – Coach Players Like Pros
13:00 – Accountability
16:00 – Coaching High-Level Players
18:30 – Running The Play
21:00 – Legacy
23:00 – Challenges
27:00 – Developing Players as a Leader
30:00 – Seattle Storm Offense
33:30 – Fake Handoff Cues
35:30 – Open Ball Screens
38:00 – Single Double Action
42:00 – Transition and Analytics
46:00 – Greatest Area For Growth
48:00 – Conclusion

Noelle Quinn Links from the Podcast:

Sue Bird

Breanna Stewart

Alysha Clark

Jordin Canada

Jewell Loyd

Kara Lawson

Chauncey Billups

Steve Kerr

Dawn Staley

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