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John Kuester

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Nationality  American
Name  John Kuester
Career start  1977
Listed height  6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Role  Basketball Coach
Career end  1980
Listed weight  180 lb (82 kg)
Height  1.88 m
Position  Point guard
Pro career  1977–1980
Weight  82 kg

John Kuester Lakers assistant coaching candidate profile John Kuester
Born  February 6, 1955 (age 60) Richmond, Virginia (1955-02-06)
High school  Benedictine (Richmond, Virginia)
NBA draft  1977 / Round: 3 / Pick: 53rd overall
Education  University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Benedictine College Preparatory

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John Dewitt Kuester, Jr. (pronounced: ) (born February 6, 1955) is an American basketball coach and scout.


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He played in the NBA from 1977 to 1980 and then coached in the college ranks before moving on to the NBA sidelines as an assistant. Kuester was named head coach of the Detroit Pistons on July 9, 2009. An agreement was made after the Pistons and their first choice, Avery Johnson, broke off contract talks. Kuester coached the Pistons for two seasons.

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He was a 6'2" (1.88 m) and 180 lb (82 kg) guard and played collegiately with the University of North Carolina Tar Heels from 1973–77.

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High School

Kuester played four years at Benedictine for legendary coach Warren Rutledge. Leading his team to three consecutive state Catholic League titles, the Cadets were 33-1 his senior year.


Kuester played four seasons with the UNC Tar Heels under head coach Dean Smith, for whom he won two ACC championships and helped reach the NCAA Tournament four times, including an appearance in the 1977 NCAA Finals, in which they lost to Marquette 67–59. In both his junior and senior year (1976 and 1977), Kuester was voted UNC's best defensive player. Also in his senior year, as was voted Most Valuable Player of the ACC Tournament and the NCAA East Regionals.


Kuester was selected with the 9th pick of the third round (53rd overall) in the 1977 NBA draft by the Kansas City Kings. He played 78 games for them in 1977–78, averaging 4.8 points, 1.5 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game. In his second and third (and final) seasons he played with the Denver Nuggets and Indiana Pacers, respectively.

Coaching career

After his playing days, Kuester began a basketball coaching career, volunteering as an assistant at the University of Richmond in 1980 to 1981. From 1981 to 1983 he was an assistant to Rick Pitino at Boston University, before succeeding him in 1983 as the youngest head coach in NCAA Division I.

From 1985 to 1990 he was the head coach at George Washington University. His 1988–1989 Colonials team compiled a 1-27 record, one of the worst ever in NCAA history.

He continued his career on the sidelines in the NBA, joining the Boston Celtics in 1990 and serving as an assistant from 1995 to 1997, and from 1997 to 2003 an assistant for the Philadelphia 76ers under head coach Larry Brown. In 2003–04, Kuester followed Brown to the Detroit Pistons where he also served as an assistant. In 2004–05 Kuester was an assistant with the New Jersey Nets, and returned to the 76ers once more in 2005–06. In July 2006, Kuester was named as an assistant coach for the Orlando Magic.

In August 2007, Kuester was named to Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Mike Brown's staff, replacing the departing Kenny Natt.

In July 2009, Kuester was hired as head coach of the Detroit Pistons, replacing Michael Curry.

On June 5, 2011, Kuester was fired from his position as head coach of the Detroit Pistons.

On June 29, 2011, Kuester was hired as an assistant coach for the Los Angeles Lakers under new head coach Mike Brown. Since his days in Cleveland, this marked the second time Kuester has worked as an assistant coach under Brown.

On September 7, 2012, Kuester was named an advance scout for the Lakers.


Kuester and wife, Tricia, have a son, John III, and a daughter, Katelyn. Katelyn ("Katie") played basketball at St. Joseph's University.

Coaching record



John Kuester Wikipedia