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NBA's Nelson named China's assistant coach for Olympics
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Golden State Warriors general manager Donnie Nelson has been named an assistant coach to China's Olympic basketball team in the lead-up to the Beijing Games, the sport's chiefs have announced.

The China Basketball Association named Nelson as an assistant to Lithuanian head coach Jonas Kazlauskas when a training squad for the August Olympics was announced last week.

Nelson will report to Beijing as soon as the Warriors finish the ongoing NBA season, according to the Basketball Pioneers newspaper, which carried an article on his appointment on Monday.

The Chinese side has scheduled 18 warm-up matches before the Olympics, but will be missing Houston Rockets centre Yao Ming, who is suffering a stress fracture to his left foot and will be sidelined for up to four months.

Former Dallas Mavericks assistant coach Del Harris coached the Chinese Olympic team to an eighth place finish in the Athens Games, when Nelson served as a team consultant, a post that he has held ever since.

Centre Wang Zhizhi became China's first player in the NBA when he was selected by the Mavericks in 2001. Although he played in the world's top league for four years he saw little playing time.

(Agencies via China Daily March 5, 2008)

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