The Sal's NBL will rename its Coach of the Year award in the men's competition to the Steve McKean Coach of the Year commencing in season 2022.
Widely known, regarded and respected as one of the competition's foremost leaders for much of the last 40-plus years, Coach Steve McKean sadly passed away after a short illness earlier this year.
He is a BBNZ Hall of Famer.
Coach McKean was at the helm of the Tall Blacks from 1972-1981 and led the team to their first ever win over Australia in 1978.
McKean started his New Zealand basketball career with the Auckland Club, Panmure, after arriving from the USA over 50 years ago. He was an NBL coach for nine years, during that time he was notably the coach of the first team in the NBL to win 100 games. Coach received the Basketball New Zealand Coach of the Year Award in both 1978 and again in 2002.
McKean was awarded the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2012 for his services to Sport, and in 2016 was honoured by the wider sports sector when he was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the New Zealand Sport and Recreation Awards.
He dedicated years as a Regional Sports director for Sport Taranaki and as a secondary school sports co-ordinator where he was instrumental in so many young people’s lives.
"When we presented this idea to the NBL men's teams last week it was supported in a heartbeat, every single team was delighted with the proposal to name this prestigous annual award after Coach McKean," said League General Manager Justin Nelson.
"I look forward to speaking with Rachel and the family shortly, I know they will be very supportive and hopefully they can be on hand to present the Steve McKean Coach of the Year award at the 2022 finals."