Breakers coach quits after horror season, replacement named

Source: 1News

The Breakers have lost their old coach and named his replacement all in the space of one afternoon with Mody Maor taking over from Dan Shamir next season.

Dan Shamir.

The Breakers announced on Wednesday evening that Shamir had "stepped down" from his position after three seasons at the club with a year still left on his contract.

The club said in a statement that Shamir's motivation for leaving was he wanted to return to Israel to reunite with extended family.

"The reason behind me leaving comes down to my family," said Shamir.

"The past two seasons living in Melbourne have taken a toll on my wife and kids.

"It is time for me and my family to go home now, but this place will forever be part of our lives and identity."

The departure comes after Shamir's worst season with the Breakers to date since taking over the side three years ago. They finished 5-23 after being forced to play their entire season in Australia yet again due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Shamir came to the Breakers back in 2019 as a highly-touted coach who had played a significant role in the success of multiple clubs in Europe, but his time with the New Zealand outfit has been much more difficult.

Breakers look on after a loss.

The Breakers under Shamir failed to make the playoffs in all three seasons and steadily got worse over that time.

The Breakers missed the top four on a countback in Shamir's first season when they finished 15-13 after managing to turn their campaign around with 11 wins from their last 14 games.

The following season, the club went 12-24 after they were forced to relocate to Australia and things didn't get much better this year.

Speaking from America, Breakers owner Matt Walsh said Shamir would be missed.

"Dan led us through the most difficult two years in Breakers' history and through circumstances that no other basketball team in the world had to go through," Walsh said.

"His work ethic and professionalism are a model for all, and I am very thankful for the last three years."

Maor takes over the reins having also joined the side in 2019 as an assistant and has now been tasked with rebuilding the club back to its former glory.

Walsh said plans were in place already for Maor to succeed Shamir when his predecessor's contract ended.

"Ask the players; they will tell you Mody has been the driving force behind the development of Finn Delany, Will McDowell-White, Yanni Wetzell, Ousmane Dieng, Hugo Besson and RJ Hampton," Walsh said.

"His passion and excitement for the game are contagious. He has all the tools to be a great head coach and get us back to contending for championships."

Maor said his first goal was bring pride back to the club after a tough two years away.

"There is a great kiwi core out there for us to recruit, and you can expect an exciting team pulling on the Breakers’ jersey next season," Maor said.

"We have an opportunity to rebuild, remake and reinvigorate."