Conner Henry has decided to leave the Fort Wayne Mad Ants to join the Los Angeles Lakers as the head coach of their NBA D-League team, the Los Angeles D-Fenders. Henry, a Southern California native, got his start in the D-League with the D-Fenders as an assistant coach.
Henry had a fabulous two year run with the Mad Ants. In his first season, he won the 2014 NBA D-League Championship, guided the Mad Ants to the best record in the league, and was named the 2014 Coach of the Year. This past season, Henry led the team to an Eastern Conference Championship and a return trip to the NBA D-League Finals, where the team ultimately fell short of back to back titles after losing to the Santa Cruz Warriors.
“It is a sad day for the Mad Ants to be losing Conner, but we also could not be happier for him that he has an opportunity to be coaching closer to his home and family,” said Mad Ants President Jeff Potter. “Conner’s life is in the Los Angeles area, and I knew this was the one job he might leave us for. I am so grateful for all he has done for our franchise, and we wish him every success as he embarks on this next journey. It has been a joy to work with Conner both personally and professionally — he will be missed.”
The Mad Ants will begin their coaching search soon and hope to have the position filled by the end of July. “The Mad Ants have developed a culture of winning with Duane Ticknor and Conner Henry, and we will leave no stone unturned in finding the right person to lead us to our next championship,” stated Potter.