Ottawa SkyHawks basketball team fires head coach

The Ottawa SkyHawks basketball team has fired its head coach after just seven games.

Jaren Jackson, 1999 NBA champion, replacing Kevin Keathley for Wednesday game

The Ottawa SkyHawks basketball team has fired its head coach after just seven games.

Jaren Jackson, left, is now head coach of the Ottawa SkyHawks basketball team. He is shown in this 2000 photo playing for the San Antonio Spurs against Shaquille O'Neal, right, and the Los Angeles Lakers. (Associated Press/Edward A. Ornelas)

The new team won four of its first seven games under Kevin Keathley, but Jaren Jackson — a 1999 NBA champion — will be replacing him.

He will coach his first game on Wednesday.

“We feel that a new coaching philosophy is needed to drive this franchise forward for the long term," said team owner Gus Takkale in a media release issued by the SkyHawks on Monday.

Jackson played under NBA hall of fame coach Gregg Popovich. Jackson has nine years of experience playing in the NBA and has coached in the NCAA, ABA, CBA, PBL.

Most recently, Jackson coached NBL Canada's St. John Mill Rats in 2012.

"He has won various minor league championships and knows what it takes to get players working together in synergy," Takkale said.

“Coach Jackson has the championship pedigree to teach, mentor and lead our young nucleus of players on and off the court,” said Merrick Palmer, the team's technical director.

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