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Kristi Toliver isn’t near the end of her playing days for the Washington Mystics in the WNBA. In fact she is still one of the top WNBA picks for fantasy WNBA players!
Still, that hasn’t stopped the 31-year-old guard from already laying the groundwork toward her goal for what comes next after the curtain does drop on her playing career.
Being an NBA coach.
“Coaching has always been on my radar just because I want to stay involved in the game,” Toliver told Kendra Andrews of The Washington Post. “I know that I love the NBA; I grew up around the NBA. So, now as I’m getting older… it’s like, ‘OK, let me see if coaching is what I want to pursue.’ And it is – 1,000 percent. It would be a dream.”
Last week, Toliver got on a red-eye flight to Nevada after back-to-back Mystics games to work as an assistant coach for the Washington Wizards’ squad in the Las Vegas Summer League.
She hopes to follow in the footsteps of such pioneers as Nancy Lieberman, Becky Hammon and Stephanie Reedy, all of whom have become assistant coaches for men’s professional teams.
Toliver believes coaching has helped her as a player.
“It’s really helped me practice staying in the moment and focusing on one thing at a time,” Toliver told Andrews. “So, when I’m with the Wizards guys, I’m 100 percent there. When I step across these lines with the Mystics, I am 100 percent here. It’s been a nice challenge.
“As a player,” Toliver continued, “you want to live moment to moment throughout the game. It’s just another practice.”