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Spurs hire Monty Williams as vice president of basketball operations

SAN ANTONIO -- The San Antonio Spurs announced multiple changes to their basketball operations staff Friday, most notably the addition of Monty Williams as the vice president of basketball operations and Brian Wright as assistant general manager.

Williams, a former assistant with the Oklahoma City Thunder and head coach of the New Orleans Pelicans (2010-15), returns to San Antonio for his second stint with the organization.

He played nine years in the NBA, including a little more than two seasons with the Spurs before starting his front-office and coaching career with the team as a coaching intern during the 2004-05 season.

Williams spent last season with the Thunder as an assistant coach. He took an indefinite leave from the team after his wife's death in a February car accident. After the season, it was announced that Williams would not return to the Thunder.

Before going to Oklahoma City, Williams led New Orleans to the playoffs on two occasions. Prior to that, Williams worked five seasons as an assistant coach with the Portland Trail Blazers. Williams also served as an assistant coach from 2013-16 on the USA men's national team.

Wright joins the Spurs after serving the past two seasons as general manager of the Detroit Pistons. He also spent eight seasons with the Orlando Magic, where he worked as director of college scouting in his final season.

The Spurs also announced the promotion of Will Hardy as an assistant coach. Hardy worked the past six seasons with the Spurs, including the last three as the club's video coordinator, and has spent the last two summers as head coach for San Antonio's summer league team in Utah.

Other announcements included the addition of Phil Cullen as director of basketball strategy and Pat Sund as pro personnel scout and assistant general manager of the club's NBA D-League team, the Austin Spurs. The club also added Nick Repole as director of basketball information systems and Landry Fields as a college scout, while promoting Andy Birdsong to director of pro player personnel and general manager of the Austin Spurs.

San Antonio also promoted Brandon James to assistant general counsel and director of basketball administration and elevated Dave Telep to director of scouting. The Spurs named Xavi Schelling the team's director of sports science and athletic performance, while promoting Niraj Mulji to basketball operations manager and Dutch Gaitley as video coordinator, where he'll replace Hardy.