The fifth head coach in franchise history, Tanisha Wright joined the Atlanta Dream prior to the 2022 WNBA Season and led the franchise to its most wins in a season (14) since 2018. Her breakout first year as a head coach with the Dream also earned her the Associated Press Coach of the Year award and a second-place finish in WNBA Kia Coach of the Year voting.
As head coach, Wright is responsible for fostering the growth of the Dream’s players and establishing a culture of integrity and accountability. She brings 14 years of WNBA experience as a player and 2 more seasons as an assistant coach with the Las Vegas Aces.
A first-round draft pick in 2005, Wright spent 10 seasons as a guard with the Seattle Storm, where she helped lead the team to nine straight playoff appearances and a WNBA Championship in 2010. She played another four seasons with the New York Liberty and Minnesota Lynx before retiring as a player in 2019.
While still playing in the league, Wright began her coaching career in 2017 as an assistant with the University of North Carolina at Charlotte 49ers. In 2020, the Aces signed her as an assistant coach, where she worked closely with industry leader Bill Laimbeer.
Prior to joining the WNBA, Wright was a three-time Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year and First-Team All-American at Penn State.
What they’re saying
“But what makes Wright so unique? It’s not just her defensive prowess or her experience in the league; it’s her focus on accountability, toughness, and trust,” Gabriella Lewis for The Next
“I talk to Tanisha a lot. I’ve grown to have an appreciation for her mindset of basketball. She has started her coaching career a little bit different from me in that she’s molding these players into a system, where I kind of came into a system, had veteran players and was just trying to tweak the system and improve it in various ways. It’s good to have somebody to lean on in this business, except for when we play her, I want her team to win,” Seattle Storm head coach Noelle Quinn, “Same Aspirations, Different Classroom” by Mark Moschetti for storm.wnba.com
Tina Charles on who in her life has made the biggest impact on her in her career, on The Players’ Pod with Kelley O’Hara (Just Women’s Sports) … “I’m going to say Tanisha Wright. She just became the head coach of the Atlanta Dream and I know she’s going to do great things there. I played with her for three seasons with the New York Liberty, and she definitely changed my mindset, my approach, what I needed to do, the accountability piece.”
Top news coverage
A meteoric rise to greatness: the Atlanta Dream’s Tanisha Wright | Gabriella Lewis for The Next, August 7, 2022
Tanisha Wright is Instilling the Atlanta Dream With Toughness and Defensive Tenacity | Ellie Lieberman for SLAM Magazine, printed in second edition of WSLAM, July 28, 2022
They Got Next: An Inside Look at the Atlanta Dream Rebuild | Mark Schindler for WNBA.com, October 14, 2022