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T-Wolves Coach Flip Saunders Dies Of Cancer at 60-Years-Old
In August, Minnesota Timberwolves head coach Flip Saunders announced that he was being treated for Hodgkin lymphoma. Today, he died at the age of 60.
At the time of his announcement, it was believed that Saunders’ cancer was “very treatable and curable.” He was even expected to resume his duties as head coach and president of basketball operations with the club, but in September he suffered a setback that landed him back in the hospital.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver issued the following statement on Saunders’ passing:
“The NBA family is mourning today over the tragic loss of our friend and colleague, Flip Saunders. With more than 40 years around the game, 20 of them in the NBA, Flip’s untimely passing has left a gaping hole in the fabric of our league. Flip was a beloved figure around the NBA, nowhere more so than in Minnesota, demonstrating a genuine and consistent passion for his players, his team and the game. On behalf of the NBA, we offer our most sincere condolences to Flip’s wife, Debbie, their four children and the entire Minnesota Timberwolves organization.”
Flip Saunders spent 17 years as a head coach in the NBA, earning a 654-592 record and plenty of respect during that time.
Our deepest condolences go out to the friends and family of Flip.
Here’s how the NBA reacted to this sad news:
It was a honor and privilege to be coached and mentored by one of the most kind hearted and caring person in this world. You believed in me so much especially when you brought me over to Minnesota and seen my potential to be special in this league for that I am forever grateful. I love you and gonna miss you RIP FLIP until we meet again ❤️
— LeBron James (@KingJames) October 25, 2015
My thoughts and prayers go out to Coach Flip Saunders family and friends. Rest In Heaven Coach, you will be missed! pic.twitter.com/LaBUbzLqPV
— SHAQ (@SHAQ) October 25, 2015
A photo posted by Richard Hamilton (@ripcity3232) on
I’ve been thinking for 30 minutes of what to say but words can’t describe how special and important Coach Saunders was to me. I want to thank you coach for giving me the opportunity to play in the NBA and achieve my dream. I know the man above has a special place for you in his kingdom and this world, this league, this family will never be the same. I love you coach and I’m going to miss you so so much.
Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor on Flip pic.twitter.com/sElx1WXPgv
— Sean Highkin (@highkin) October 25, 2015
We are extremely saddened to learn today Phil “Flip” Saunders has passed away at age 60.
— Timberwolves (@Timberwolves) October 25, 2015