Former University of Kentucky star Walter McCarty has been hired by the Indiana Pacers as an assistant coach, the team announced Thursday.
McCarty, 36, comes to his first NBA coaching job after serving as an assistant coach at the University of Louisville for Rick Pitino the past three seasons.
McCarty played at Kentucky from 1993 to 1996 and played for the Wildcats' national championship team in 1996.
A first-round draft pick of New York (19th overall) in 1996, McCarty played for the Knicks, Boston Celtics, Phoenix Suns and Los Angeles Clippers before retiring after 10 seasons in the NBA.
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"I've had the privilege to be associated with Walter at the University of Kentucky and with the Boston Celtics," said Pacers Coach Jim O'Brien said. "He's an extremely hard-working student of the game and he and his family will be great additions to the Pacers and Indianapolis area."
After retiring from the NBA, McCarty got his first coaching break from his former coach at Kentucky, Pitino.
"I am ecstatic about returning to my home state and to start working with the Pacers," said McCarty, an Evansville native. "I am anxious to work alongside Jim O'Brien and am very excited about the direction this franchise is headed."
Pitino applauded the move.
"Walt has been an integral part of my basketball family for many years, both as a player and a coach," Pitino said. "He is an outstanding teacher, motivator and person and will be a great asset to the Pacers organization. We will miss his upbeat and positive personality he brought each and everyday. We are very excited for him to enter the ranks of professional basketball as a coach."