CHARLOTTE, NC – Charlotte Hornets President of Basketball Operations & General Manager Mitch Kupchak announced today the team has named Steve Clifford head coach. Clifford, who previously served the team’s head coach from 2013-2018, returns to Charlotte, where his 196 wins ranks second in franchise history.

“We are pleased to welcome Steve back to our franchise,” said Kupchak. “We believe that his previous experience and coaching philosophy make him the best coach for our team. Steve has a proven track record of improving defenses and is detail oriented. He has a history of maximizing players’ talent and working with them to develop and expand their skill sets. Steve is committed to playing with the same offensive pace that our fans are accustomed to seeing the last few years. We are confident that he will be able to help our young players continue to grow as we look to take the next step as a team.”

Clifford has more than 20 years of NBA coaching experience and more than 35 years overall, including eight seasons as a head coach with the Hornets (2013-2018) and Orlando Magic (2018-2021). He spent the 2021-22 season as a consultant for the Brooklyn Nets and Head Coach Steve Nash. Clifford has a career record of 292-345 as a head coach, including a 196-214 mark in his previous five seasons in Charlotte. His teams have made the playoffs in four of his eight seasons and finished in the top 10 in both points allowed and defensive rating on five occasions.

“I’m happy to be returning to Charlotte, and I want to thank Michael Jordan, Mitch Kupchak and Buzz Peterson for this opportunity,” said Clifford. “This is an exciting young team with a lot of talented pieces. Charlotte is a great city and I know first-hand the passion that Hornets fans have for this franchise. I can’t wait to get back to town and start working with our players.”