LOS ANGELES, CA - AUGUST 4: Associate Head Coach Katie Smith of the New York Liberty coaches before the game against the Los Angeles Sparks on August 4, 2017 at the STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, California.
NEW YORK (AP) Katie Smith couldn't think of a better place to get her first chance to become a head coach than New York.
Smith will take over the Liberty, the team announced Monday. She's been an assistant with New York since retiring from the WNBA in 2013 and was promoted to associated head coach in 2016. She takes over for Bill Laimbeer, who served as the Liberty's coach from 2013-17.
"I'm really, really excited about having an opportunity," Smith said in a phone interview. "Having the opportunity in New York, that's only place I've coached. All of us understood for the last few years, we'd be heading this way at some point. When it was, was always the question. Bill has earned every right to choose where and when deservedly so."