Team Contact Information:Denver Nuggets
1000 Chopper Circle
Denver, CO 80204
|Owner||E. Stanley Kroenke|
|President & Governor||Josh Kroenke|
|General Manager & Exec. V.P. of Basketball Operations||Tim Connelly|
|Assistant General Manager & V.P. of Basketball Operations||Arturas Karnisovas|
|Sr. VP Business, Team Operations||Pete D’Alessandro|
|Director of Basketball Operations||Ben Tenzer|
|Vice President of Basketball Administration||Lisa Johnson|
|Director of Team Operations/Player Development||Amy O'Brien|
|Lead Scout||Herb Livsey|
|Director of Scouting||Jim Clibanoff|
|Director of Pro Personnel||Jared Jeffries|
|Manager of Player Personnel||Scott Howard|
|International Scout||Rafael Juc|
|Director of Basketball Analytics||Tommy Balcetis|
|Basketball Analytics Associate||Chris Feller|
|Basketball Operations Associate||Chuck Hayes|
|Head Coach||Michael Malone|
|Assistant Coach||Wes Unseld Jr.|
|Assistant Coach||Micah Nori|
|Assistant Coach||Jordi Fernandez|
|Assistant Coach||Chris Finch|
|Assistant Coach||Ryan Bowen|
|Player Development||John Beckett|
|Player Development||Stephen Graham|
|Player Development||Ognjen Stojakovic|
|Head Video Coordinator||Travess Armenta|
|Assistant Video Coordinator||Tommy Massimino Jr.|
|Head Athletic Trainer||Dan Shimensky|
|Dir. Performance/Assistant Coach/Strength and Conditioning||Steve Hess|
|Associate Head Strength & Conditioning Coach||Felipe Eichenberger|
|Asst. Athletic Trainer/Asst. Strength & Conditioning Coach||Jason Miller|
|Physical Therapist||Steve Short|
|Massage Therapist||Kelsey Clemens|
|Equipment Manager||Sparky Gonzales|
|Media Relations Director||Tim Gelt|
|Media Relations Manager||Nick O'Hayre|
|Media Relations Coordinator||Cody Wise|
|Media Relations Associate||Steven Blevins|
|Director of Player Services and Broadcast Relations||Tim Dixon|
|Director of Team Security||Bobby Simmons|
Team Orthopedic Medicine
|Head Team Orthopedist||Dr. Steve Traina (Western Orthopedics)|
|Team Orthopedist||Dr. Raj Bazaz|
|Team Orthopedist||Dr. Brian White|
|Team Orthopedist||Dr. Edward (Ted) Parks|
Team Internal Medicine
|Head Team Internist||Dr. Saurabh Mangalik (Denver Internal Medicine)|
|Head Team Cardiologist||Dr. Mike Ptasnik (Colorado Heart and Vascular)|
|Team Internist||Dr. David Mellman|
|Head Team Dentist||Dr. Stephen Barker (Southbridge Dentistry)|
|Team Dentist||Dr. Scott Kissinger|
|Team Dentist||Dr. Brian Svoboda|
|Team Dentist||Dr. Alison Hoover|
|Team Dentist||Dr. Boyd Tomasetti|
|Team Dentist||Dr. Julia Plevnia|
|Team Dentist||Dr. John Tannyhill|
|Head Team Opthamologist||Dr. C. Starck Johnson (Specialty Eye Care/InSight Lasik)|
|Team Opthamologist||Dr. Gary Jamell|
|Team Opthamologist||Dr. Richard Kelmenson|
|Team Opthamologist||Dr. Amy Kelmenson|
|Team Opthamologist||Dr. John Zilis|
|Head Team Dermatologist||Dr. Meg Lemon (Colorado Dermatology Specialists)|
Basketball Operations Bios
E. Stanley Kroenke
Owner/Chairman, Kroenke Sports & Entertainment, LLC
Mr. E. Stanley Kroenke became owner of the Denver Nuggets on July 6, 2000. Under his leadership, the Nuggets were one of only two NBA teams to make the playoffs in all 10 seasons from 2003 through 2013, including a thrilling run to the Western Conference Finals in 2009. Kroenke has overseen two Executive of the Year winners as well as one Coach of the Year award.
From 2006 to 2011, the Nuggets enjoyed their most successful five-year span in franchise history. Denver averaged 50.4 wins per season during this stretch, earned two Northwest Division titles and won 50+ games in four consecutive years for the first time in team history.
In addition to this unprecedented stretch, the Nuggets also enjoyed a single season of unmatched excellence in 2013. Denver won a franchise-record 57 games, including an all-time team best 15-game winning streak in March 2013. The Nuggets excelled in many areas that season, but most impressive was their 38-3 mark at Pepsi Center, the best home record in Denver franchise history.
In the summer of 2011, Kroenke elevated Josh Kroenke to team President and Governor. In his expanded role, Josh Kroenke hired Tim Connelly as General Manager and Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations in July 2013 and named Michael Malone as Head Coach in June 2015.
Under Kroenke’s ownership, the Colorado Avalanche have been one of the most accomplished hockey clubs in the NHL. In the team’s first season under his ownership (2000), the Avalanche hosted the NHL All-Star Game, won the Presidents’ Trophy, and defeated the New Jersey Devils to win the Stanley Cup, the second in franchise history (1996). The Avalanche have won four division championships under Kroenke’s watch, and during his first five years they sold out every home game and went on to post an NHL-record 487 consecutive game sellout streak. Additionally, the 2015-16 hockey season featured yet another landmark event with the Avalanche hosting the Coors Light NHL Stadium Series outdoor game on Feb. 27, 2016 at Coors Field.
Off the court, one of Kroenke’s priorities has been the Colorado community. More than $16 million in contributions have been made to Colorado charities through Kroenke Sports Charities and the Denver Nuggets and Colorado Avalanche Community Funds. The Nuggets continue to be a strong supporter of youth basketball in the State of Colorado through initiatives such as donating to youth basketball programs and providing numerous youth camps to help teach the game to local children.
Kroenke Sports & Entertainment owns Major League Soccer’s Colorado Rapids and the National Lacrosse League’s Colorado Mammoth. The Rapids hosted the MLS All-Star Game in 2007 and 2015 and won the MLS Cup Championship in 2010. The Mammoth has been a playoff participant in 13 of its 14 seasons and won the NLL championship in 2006. The Mammoth also hosted the NLL All-Star Game in 2004 and 2009.
In June 2011, Kroenke became the majority shareholder of Arsenal FC, the storied English Premier League football club. The St. Louis Rams (now the Los Angeles Rams) won the Super Bowl in 2000 while Mr. Kroenke was a co-owner; he became the team’s principal owner in August 2010.
Overall, the Nuggets, Avalanche, Rapids and Mammoth have made 37 playoff appearances, won three league championships and hosted five All-Star Games since 2000-01. Arsenal won the 2014 and 2015 FA Cup and has qualified for the Champions League in 19 consecutive seasons.
In addition to his success as an owner, Kroenke has been a pioneer in television programming. In September 2004, Kroenke launched Altitude Sports & Entertainment, a 24-hour regional television network that is the broadcast home for the Nuggets, Avalanche, Mammoth and Rapids. Altitude also airs professional, collegiate and high school sporting events throughout the Rocky Mountain region. KSE acquired the Outdoor Channel in May 2013. The independent cable network is received by nearly 40 million U.S. households, making it the largest outdoor TV footprint in the country.
In 2014 KSE added to its outdoor media holdings with the acquisition of Sportsman Channel, which reaches more than 36 million U.S. households, along with a number of well-known outdoor enthusiast print and digital publications. KSE also owns the World Fishing Network.
The Pepsi Center, a KSE-owned facility and the largest indoor arena, event center and concert venue in Colorado, is the home arena for the Nuggets, Avalanche and Mammoth, seating 19,718 fans for basketball and 18,007 for hockey.
On April 7, 2007, KSE opened Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, one of the largest soccer-specific complexes in the world. The state-of-the-art sports facility sits on more than 160 acres in Commerce City, CO, and holds 18,000 fans for field sports and up to 27,000 for concerts. KSE also owns the Paramount Theatre, a historic landmark in downtown Denver, and through Peak Entertainment, LLC, a joint venture between KSE and AEG Live Rocky Mountains, co-manages 1STBANK Center in Broomfield, CO, a multi-use arena accommodating up to 6,500 people for a variety of events. Pepsi Center, the Paramount Theatre and 1STBANK Center are home to more than 300 events annually, including world renowned acts such as Garth Brooks, U2, Madonna, Taylor Swift, Phish, Aerosmith and Bruce Springsteen.
Kroenke’s enthusiasm and vision ensure that Denver will continue to be the top entertainment destination in the Rocky Mountain region for generations to come. Local media outlets have consistently named Kroenke one of the most significant people in the Denver arts and entertainment community, saying “no other person entertains more people more often.”
Kroenke is chairman and owner of The Kroenke Group, a private real estate investment and development company with properties located throughout the United States and Canada. Over the past four decades, he has built a reputation as one of the nation’s leading real estate developers.
A member of the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame, Kroenke holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Missouri. In addition to their son Josh, who is also President and Governor of the Avalanche, Stan and his wife, Ann, have a daughter, Whitney, an award-winning documentary film producer.
President and Governor
Since joining the Denver Nuggets front office in 2007, team President and Governor Josh Kroenke has established himself as a highly regarded executive while overseeing one of the most successful stretches in franchise history. In his role with the Nuggets, Kroenke is involved in every aspect of day-to-day operations and represents the team at NBA ownership meetings.
During Kroenke’s tenure, the Nuggets adapted to numerous changes to win at least 50 games in five straight non work-stoppage seasons from 2007 to 2013. They also advanced to the 2009 Western Conference finals and captured two Northwest Division titles during that span. He has overseen two NBA Executive of the Year awards, one NBA Coach of the Year award, six All-Star selections, three All-NBA selections and four players selected to All-Rookie teams. Additionally, former Nugget Allen Iverson, who played with the team from 2006 to 2008, was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame over this summer.
Kroenke, 36, was named Vice President of Team Development in 2007 and moved into his current role as President and Governor in 2010. In addition to his duties with the Nuggets, he serves as President and Governor of the Colorado Avalanche (National Hockey League) and Alternate Governor for the Colorado Rapids (Major League Soccer). On top of his roles with the Nuggets, Avalanche, and Rapids, Kroenke works closely with KSE executives on multiple business operation issues, ranging from finance to marketing. In 2014, Kroenke was named to the Sports Business Journal’s prestigious “Forty Under 40” list. The annual list honors the most promising young executives in sports business under the age of 40.
During the 2010-11 season, Kroenke helped orchestrate one of the biggest trades in league history, completing a three-team, 13-player deal with the New York Knicks and Minnesota Timberwolves on Feb. 22, 2011. Kroenke and the Nuggets front office continued to improve the team’s roster through the draft and the trade market, and the Nuggets went on to win a team-record 57 games during the 2012-13 season. It marked the 10th straight year Denver reached the playoffs – the second-longest active streak in the NBA at the time.
Additionally, Kroenke has spearheaded numerous business initiatives throughout Pepsi Center and the Denver Nuggets organization. In 2013 he oversaw the installation of a multimillion dollar 4,400 square foot HD center-hung scoreboard, one of the largest and most technologically advanced scoreboards in a professional sports arena. In just the past year he has unveiled new home, road and alternate jerseys for the Nuggets, overseen the complete redesign of the Nuggets’ locker room, training room and players’ lounge, and introduced the multimillion dollar Club Lexus, offering exclusive amenities and services to court-side ticket holders.
Over the past several seasons, Kroenke has ushered in new eras for both Nuggets basketball and Avalanche hockey. The Nuggets added to their young, energetic core in 2013 by hiring first-year General Manager/Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly and in 2015 Kroenke and Connelly hired Michael Malone to be the franchise’s new head coach. In the summer of 2013, the Avalanche re-enlisted a legend from their Stanley Cup championship teams by hiring Hall of Fame center Joe Sakic as Executive Vice President of Hockey Operations. The Avalanche responded by winning the Central Division and reaching the playoffs for the first time since 2010. Their 112 points were the most by the club since their Stanley Cup Championship season in 2000-01. Kroenke, in conjunction with the National Hockey League, was instrumental in bringing the 2016 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series game to Denver. The event, which featured the Avalanche and the Red Wings playing at Coors Field on Feb. 27, 2016, was the first ever NHL outdoor game in the State of Colorado.
Athletic competition has always been a passion for Kroenke, who attended the University of Missouri on a full basketball scholarship. He was a contributor during Missouri’s trip to the Elite Eight as a sophomore in 2002, and he earned Academic All-Big XII First Team honors while serving as team captain during his junior and senior seasons. After graduating with a degree in financial management, Kroenke completed a six-month internship with the NBA’s League Office working in its Player Development Department. Upon finishing his internship, Kroenke worked as an underwriter for Lehman Brothers in their Global Real Estate Group where he assisted with the debt underwriting and securitization of numerous commercial real estate transactions.
Away from the Avalanche and Nuggets, Kroenke serves on the Board of Directors for Arsenal Football Club in London and on the Board of Strategic Development for the Trulaske College of Business at the University of Missouri. Kroenke is an active supporter of Kroenke Sports Charities and the Denver Nuggets and Colorado Avalanche Community Funds. He is involved in several other charitable endeavors, including the Todd Peglow Memorial Scholarship Fund at the University of Missouri. He is also a major supporter of the Playing For Change Foundation, which was co-founded by his sister, Whitney, and benefits children worldwide by building schools that specialize in teaching music and arts.
General Manager & Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations
Tim Connelly begins his fourth season as the Denver Nuggets’ general manager and executive vice president of basketball operations after being hired to this role in July 2013. Connelly works closely with team president Josh Kroenke in all aspects of team and organizational matters as they aim to keep the Nuggets among the NBA elite.
Connelly, 38, spent the previous three seasons with New Orleans as their assistant general manager before coming to Denver. His duties included scouting, draft preparation, trade negations, player contracts and other aspects related to day-to-day operations.
Prior to his time with New Orleans, Connelly spent 10 years with the Washington Wizards organization where he rose to director of player personnel. In Washington, his role included overseeing scouting, salary cap and database management, player evaluation responsibilities, as well as assisting the vice president of player personnel with all front office duties.
The Baltimore product began working for the Wizards as an intern in the basketball operations department in 1996, and after his graduation from DC’s Catholic University in 1999, Connelly was named to the Wizards staff as assistant video coordinator. In 2000, Connelly became a full-time scout for Washington, and later assumed the head scouting role. During his four-year stint as a scout for the Wizards, Connelly’s travels have taken him across five continents to identify the top talent in the basketball world.
Connelly’s service to the game of basketball has spanned the globe in recent years. He currently serves on the board of GEN Basketball Academy, a Sarajevo-based academy funded by NATO, and has assisted with their youth camps. Connelly also worked in Moscow, Russia in September 2012 as part of the NBA’s “Basketball Without Borders” program. Connelly’s first experience with the program was in the summer of 2006 in South Africa. That same summer he was involved with the Seed Academy in Dakar, Senegal. Additionally, in the summer of 2007, Connelly visited Dublin, Ireland to help raise youth awareness of cultural diversity and integration through the sport of basketball, and to work with the Irish federation on future basketball-related initiatives. Connelly has also visited England with his brother Pat as part of their personal efforts to aid the globalization of basketball.
A graduate of Towson Catholic High School, Connelly has aspirations to further his involvement in grass-roots basketball programs in his hometown of Baltimore. He is one of seven children, having four brothers and two sisters. Each of Connelly’s four brothers -- Joe, Pat, Dan and Kevin -- played basketball at Towson Catholic, the powerhouse Baltimore program, and their love of the game has not faded. His brother Pat was named the Phoenix Suns assistant general manager in 2013.
Connelly and his wife Negah recently hosted the 2nd annual Mile High Ping Pong Challenge which benefitted the “Bags of Fun” organization which provides toys and gifts to pediatric patients that are suffering from critical illnesses and disease.
Connelly and his wife Negah reside in Denver with their baby daughter and newborn son.
Assistant General Manager & Vice President of Basketball Operations
Arturas Karnisovas enters his fourth season with the Denver Nuggets and first season as assistant general manager and vice president of basketball operations after previously being named assistant general manager in the summer of 2013.
Karnisovas (pronounced Car-NISH-O-Vas) assists Nuggets general manager/executive vice president of basketball operations Tim Connelly and team president Josh Kroenke with day-to-day operations related to scouting and player personnel matters.
Karnisovas, 45, joined the Nuggets after five years with the Houston Rockets, where he most recently was the director of scouting. He started with the Rockets as Director of Global scouting in 2008 after spending more than four years working in basketball operations at the NBA’s league office.
Karnisovas has also been very involved with USA Basketball since 2013, and this past summer he was a member of the coaching staff for the national team that won gold at the 2014 FIBA World Cup of Basketball.
Prior to working in the NBA, Karnisovas enjoyed an impressive international playing career.
He attended Seton Hall from 1990-94 and helped his native Lithuania win Olympic bronze medals in 1992 and 1996. Karnisovas also played professionally for Barcelona, Bologna, Olympiakos and Athens, reaching the Euroleague Final Four three times. He was named FIBA’s European Player of the Year in 1996.
Arturas and his wife Gina have two sons, Eric and Michael.
Director of Basketball Operations
Ben Tenzer enters his fourth season as the Nuggets Director of Basketball Operations, working closely with Team President Josh Kroenke and General Manager/Executive Vice President Tim Connelly on day-to-day management, legal, and operational issues; with a focus on the salary cap and the NBA’s Collective Bargaining Agreement.
Tenzer, 32, rejoined the Nuggets organization in 2013 after previously working in various capacities for the front office from 2005-2009.
His background includes working for the NBA Vegas Summer League (2005-2012), Adidas Nations (2010-2012), and the international sports and entertainment agency, Wasserman Media Group. He was also a member of the NBA’s global outreach program, Basketball Without Borders-Africa, in 2007 and 2008.
Tenzer, a Los Angeles native, is a graduate of the University of Colorado, Boulder, and Southwestern Law School in Los Angeles. He is a member, and in good standing, of the State Bar of California.
Vice President of Basketball Administration
Lisa Johnson is in her 36th year with the Denver Nuggets. The University of Denver graduate has served in many roles throughout her career with the organization, including sales, receptionist, community relations, media relations and has spent the last 16 years in basketball operations.
In her current role as Vice President of Basketball Administration, Lisa handles day-to-day operations of the office, coordinates team travel and works with the other Kroenke Sports departments in scheduling and maintaining the player appearance program.
In her spare time, Lisa has fun spending time with her husband Jim, traveling, enjoying the outdoors, music, art and flower gardening. The Johnsons reside in Centennial.
Michael Malone enters his second season as head coach of the Denver Nuggets. He was named the 16th head coach in Denver’s NBA franchise history on June 15, 2015.
Malone possesses over 20 years of coaching experience, 14 coming in the NBA with five different teams – Golden State, New Orleans, Cleveland, New York and Sacramento. The teams that Malone has been a member of the coaching staff have amassed eight playoff appearances, including one NBA Finals showing and two conference finals appearances.
Before joining the Nuggets, Malone served as the head coach of the Sacramento Kings where he posted a record of 39-67 spanning two seasons. Before his time with the Kings, Malone was the lead assistant for the Golden State Warriors under Mark Jackson from 2011-13 where they appeared in the playoffs both seasons.
Prior to Golden State, Malone worked as the lead assistant to Monty Williams in New Orleans and helped the Hornets achieve a 46-36 record and a trip to the 2011 NBA Playoffs. The Hornets were the most improved defensive team in the NBA in 2011, allowing a league-best 8.7 fewer points per game than in the previous campaign (94.0 ppg, after giving up 102.7 ppg in 2009-10).
Malone also served as an assistant coach under Mike Brown for the Cleveland Cavaliers for five seasons, during which the Cavs posted a 272-138 (.663) record, the third-best mark in the NBA over that span. The Cavaliers made five consecutive playoff appearances during Malone’s time on the bench, reaching the NBA Finals in 2007 and the Eastern Conference Finals in 2009. In 2008-09, the Cavs notched a franchise record and NBA-best 66 wins, with Malone and the rest of the team’s staff earning the right to coach the Eastern Conference All-Star squad. In 2009-10, the Cavaliers again captured the league’s best regular season record with 61 wins.
Malone’s NBA coaching career began with a four-season stint with the New York Knicks, where he originally joined Jeff Van Gundy’s staff as a coaching associate in the summer of 2001, and was promoted to assistant coach in May 2003.
Before joining the NBA, Malone coached seven years in the college ranks, with his last stop coming at Manhattan College where he was the lead assistant. During the 1998-99 season Malone worked at the University of Virginia as its director of men’s basketball administration. Malone also spent three seasons (1995-96 – 1997-98) at Providence College under New York Basketball Hall of Fame coach Pete Gillen after beginning his coaching career working for Greg Kampe at Oakland University in Michigan.
Malone is a two-time participant in the NBA’s “Basketball Without Borders” program, having coached at the league’s global outreach camps in Puerto Rico (2006) and Argentina (2005). He has also served several stints as the summer league head coach for the Hornets, Cavaliers and Knicks, and was one of six NBA coaches to participate in the NBA Pre-Draft Camp in Chicago in 2004 and 2005. Malone also served as an assistant coach for the Canadian Men’s Senior National Team for three years. He helped guide the Canadian team to a top-four finish in the 2009 FIBA Americas Championship in Puerto Rico, qualifying Canada for the 2010 World Championships.
A native of Queens, New York, Malone played college basketball at Loyola College in Maryland, where he graduated with a BA degree in 1994. He is a graduate of New Jersey’s Seton Hall Prep where he played two years under Bob Farrell. Malone also played a season under Tom Blackburn at Worcester Academy (Mass.).
Michael is the son of longtime NBA coach and former Kings and current Detroit Pistons Assistant Coach Brendan Malone, who has coached over 27 years in the league.
He and his wife, Jocelyn, have two daughters, Caitlin and Bridget.
Wes Unseld Jr.
Wes Unseld Jr. begins his second season as an assistant coach with the Denver Nuggets.
He spent the previous two seasons as an assistant coach with the Orlando Magic (2012-2014) and spent the 2011-12 campaign as an assistant coach with the Golden State Warriors.
Prior to joining Golden State, Unseld spent 13 seasons with the Washington Wizards, including six seasons as an assistant coach from 2005-11. He played a key role in player development for the Wizards, helping Washington to four consecutive playoff appearances from 2004-08. Unseld’s scouting reports were also vital to the team’s game planning and preparation.
Unseld began his NBA career in 1997, just four days after graduating from John Hopkins University, as a professional and college scout for Washington. He was promoted later that same year to advance scout. In addition to his nine-year tenure as advance pro scout for the Wizards, he also spent three seasons (1998-2000) as an advance scout for the WNBA’s Washington Mystics. In 1998, Unseld spent part of the season serving as an assistant coach for the Mystics.
A native of Maryland and the son of Hall of Famer Wes Unseld, Unseld Jr. played on the men’s basketball team at John Hopkins for three seasons. He and his wife Evelyn have two children, Layla and Wes.
Micah Nori begins his second season as an assistant coach with the Denver Nuggets and 19th in the NBA.
Prior to coming to Denver, Nori served as an assistant coach for the Sacramento Kings for two seasons on Michael Malone’s staff.
Nori joined the Kings after 15 seasons with the Toronto Raptors organization, serving the last four as an assistant coach. In addition to his duties on the bench, Nori was responsible for all game plans as well as overseeing all opponent advance scouting operations.
In his previous roles as Director of NBA Scouting and Advance Scout, Nori managed all upcoming opponent preparation for both the coaching staff and players. He also served as an assistant to the Raptors coaching staff from 1998-2000 following a successful collegiate baseball career at Indiana University.
A native of Middleton, Ohio, Nori and his wife, Melissa, have a son, Danté, and a daughter, Mia.
Jordi Fernandez, a native of Barcelona, Spain, enters his first season with the Denver Nuggets coaching staff after previously serving as the head coach of the Canton Charge.
Fernandez was named the third Canton Charge head coach in team history on September 18, 2014.
In two seasons, he led the Charge to a 61-36 record including two appearances in the D-League Eastern Conference Finals.
Previously, Fernandez was responsible for scouting and game planning for opponents, implementing offensive philosophies and working to improve players’ individual skills for the Charge. He has also spent four seasons as a player development coach for the Cleveland Cavaliers after originally being hired by Cavaliers Head Coach Mike Brown prior to the 2009-10 season. With the Cavaliers, he conducted individual skill development workouts for players, assisted with drills in practice, implemented game preparation at shoot around and helped develop scouts.
Fernandez has also served as an assistant coach at an international level for the Spanish national team at the 2013 U-19 World Championships in Prague and for Club Basquet l’Hospitalet of the Spanish professional league. He also served as a player development coach with Impact Basketball in Las Vegas, where he conducted individual workouts for college and professional players both domestically and internationally.
Chris Finch enters his first season as an assistant coach with the Denver Nuggets after spending five campaigns as an assistant coach with the Houston Rockets (2011-16) and two seasons as the head coach of the Rockets’ NBA Development League partner the Rio Grande Valley Vipers.
In two seasons at the helm of the Vipers, Finch registered a mark of 67-33 (.670) and guided Rio Grande Valley to back-to-back D-League Finals. In 2009-10, Finch took home the Dennis Johnson Coach of the Year Award en route to capturing the 2009-10 D-League championship.
Prior to his return to the United States, Finch built a successful overseas coaching career that included taking over a dormant Great Britain National Team in May 2006 and winning FIBA’s 2007 Division B Promotional Competition. In 2009, his squad qualified for the European Championships for the first time since 1981. Finch also led the British National Team in the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.
In addition to his work with the British National Team, Finch was a head coach of teams in England (Sheffield Sharks), Germany (Giessen 46ers) and Belgium (Euphony Bree, Dexia Mons-Hainaut) from 1997-2009. Finch, who has three titles and three BBL Cup Finals on his resume, qualified for the playoffs in 11 of his 12 seasons overseas. A three-time Coach of the Year, he was also selected as a FIBA EuroCup All-Star head coach. He began his career with Sheffield, which was the same club that he played on during his four-year professional playing career. Under Finch’s tutelage, the Sharks enjoyed the franchise’s most successful run in its history. Finch was named the BBL Coach of the Year after winning the regular season title with Sheffield in 1998-99. He also led Euphony Bree to their first-ever championship in 2005.
Raised in Reading, Pennsylvania, Finch graduated in 1992 as a two-time All-American at Franklin & Marshall College. The 6-foot-4 guard/forward was inducted into the F&M Sports Hall of Fame in 2002. Overall, he started the final 115 games of his collegiate career and compiled a 102-13 record (.887) over that span, which stood as the most career wins as a starter in NCAA Division III history.
Ryan Bowen enters his second season with the Denver Nuggets coaching staff after serving two seasons as the Sacramento Kings assistant coach/assistant director of player development on Coach Michael Malone’s staff.
Bowen joined the Kings after serving the previous two seasons as an assistant coach for the Denver Nuggets. In his role with Sacramento, he assisted in all aspects on the coaching staff, including on-court player development.
A 10-year NBA veteran, he appeared in 507 career games with the Nuggets (1999-2000 – 2003-04), Houston Rockets (2004-05 – 2005-06), New Orleans Hornets (2007-08 and 2008-09) and Oklahoma City Thunder (2009-10). His professional experience includes time playing overseas for Oyak Renault (Turkey) and Ironi Nahariya (Israel). Bowen was selected by the Nuggets in the second round (55th overall) of the 1998 NBA Draft.
As a collegian, Bowen enjoyed a four-year career at the University of Iowa, posting 14.4 points, 8.7 rebounds and 2.5 assists per contest during his senior year in 1997-98. He finished his career at Iowa as the school’s career field goal percentage leader (.575) and career steals leader (208) and ranks fourth in blocks (124) and eighth in rebounds (804). A two-time All-Big Ten selection, Bowen was inducted into the Iowa Boys Basketball Hall of Fame in 2012.
Following retirement from professional basketball in 2009, Bowen returned to his alma mater as video coordinator for the Hawkeyes, working in that capacity for one season before departing Iowa City for a spot on Denver’s bench serving under then Head Coach George Karl.
Bowen and his wife, Wendy, have a daughter, Isabel, and two sons, Benjamin and Zachary.
Player Development Assistant
John Beckett enters his third season on the Nuggets coaching staff and he brings along with him extensive coaching, scouting and player development experience.
Prior to coming to Denver, Beckett was an assistant coach with the Delaware 87ers of the NBA Development League. In that role, he was responsible for conducting individual pre-game and pre-practice workouts for players; developing player strength-and-conditioning programs; and preparing advanced scouting reports on upcoming opponents. He also helped prepare practice plans and provided detailed progress and scouting reports on 87ers players throughout the season.
Before joining the 87ers, Beckett spent nine years with the Atlanta Hawks (2004-13), serving as the team’s video coordinator and assisting with player development. In addition to creating video edits as part of the team’s game preparation, Beckett led and assisted in workouts and traveled as a college scout.
In addition to his work on the court, Beckett has spent the past 13 years as a freelance production contributor for Turner Sports and NBA TV. He was a member of the Emmy Award-winning “NBA on TNT” studio show.
After being named the 1996-97 Fayette County Player of the Year at Sandy Creek High School, Beckett attended Georgia State University before transferring to Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Fla., in 1998. Beckett helped the Tritons to the NCAA Division II National Tournament in 2001 and graduated with a degree in Business Management. He later played professionally for the Bergheim Bandits in Germany.
Head Athletic Trainer
Dan Shimensky enters his 10th season with the Denver Nuggets and his third as Head Athletic Trainer. He is responsible for coordinating the treatment and rehabilitation of all injuries and is responsible for the team’s travel.
In addition to being a certified and licensed (Colorado) Athletic Trainer, Shimensky has obtained his corrective exercise specialization (CES) and performance enhancement specialization (PES) certifications through the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) and his certification in applied functional science (CAFS) from the Gray Institute. Furthermore, he has obtained his certification in dry needling under the guidelines of Dr. Yun-tao Ma’s Systemic Dry Needling for Sport Performance, and in the use of the Personalized Tourniquet System for Blood Flow Restriction (BFR) rehabilitation under the Owens Recovery Science program.
Shimensky served as the Assistant Athletic Trainer/Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach for the previous seven seasons before moving into his current role. During this time he served as an executive committee member representing the Western Conference Assistant Athletic Trainers during the 2013-2014 NBA season.
A graduate of Central Washington University, Shimensky received his master’s degree in exercise science. While at CWU, he was the graduate assistant athletic trainer for football and men’s basketball.
Prior to his tenure at Central Washington, Shimensky completed his undergraduate work at the University of Utah, receiving his degree in exercise science with an emphasis in athletic training. He worked on the training staff for football and women’s gymnastics.
While at Utah, Shimensky also had the opportunity to be involved in numerous internships with several NBA organizations including the Miami Heat (Summer, 2003), the Nuggets (Fall, 2004) and the Seattle Sonics (Summers of 2004, 05, 06).
In 2009, Shimensky was fortunate and honored to be selected as Head Athletic Trainer for the USA men’s U-19 Men's FIBA World Championships. Held in Auckland, New Zealand; Shimensky helped Team USA capture the gold medal, an accomplishment that had not been achieved since 1991.
In 2011, Shimensky was brought back to USA basketball as Head Athletic Trainer for the men’s U-16 national team for the FIBA Americas Championship. Hosted in Cancun, Mexico; Shimensky was able to obtain a second gold medal as team USA finished with a perfect 5-0 record.
Shimensky, his wife Heather, and son Hudson have two dogs named Suki and Koko.
His father, Mike, was a longtime NBA Athletic Trainer.
Director of Performance/Assistant Coach and Head Strength and Conditioning Coach
Keeping the Nuggets in top physical shape is the job of Steve Hess, the team’s Director of Performance/Head Strength and Conditioning Coach/Assistant Coach. Hess oversees the team’s weight training, conditioning and nutritional programs. He designed and arranged the Nuggets’ weight room in the Pepsi Center and also designed functional pieces unique to the Denver Nuggets.
In his 20th season with the Nuggets, Hess creates and administers individual workout programs for each player throughout the entire year. He spends the majority of the off-season working with Nuggets players and other professional athletes, overseeing every aspect of their workout programs. He pushes them to reach their peak physical condition.
Hess is one of six trainers worldwide who sits on the Under Armour training council. He is also the official spokesperson for the National Sports Center for the Disabled and is also a member of NBA Team Fit.
In addition, Hess has been featured on NBA Inside Stuff, All-Access with Ahmad Rashad, NBATV and The Eating Network. He also has his own workout segment on the Altitude Sports & Entertainment network.
A graduate of Ithaca College (N.Y.), Hess received a master’s degree in physical education with an emphasis on sports medicine and a bachelor’s degree in exercise science fitness and cardiac rehabilitation in ‘91. Hess became a Muscle Activation Techniques (M.A.T.) master specialist in 2013 and earned his RTSm (Resistance Training Specialist) mastery certificate in 2016.
Hess lives to obtain peak performance in his own life. His wife, Alicia, is also a conditioning expert and the couple are proud parents of two amazing young men, Jordan and Korey.
Associate Head Strength and Conditioning Coach
Felipe Eichenberger enters his sixth season with the Denver Nuggets and first season as the Associate Head Strength and Conditioning coach after serving the previous five years as the Assistant Strength and Conditioning coach. Eichenberger assists Steve Hess with the team’s weight training, conditioning and nutritional programs.
A native of Ribeirão Preto, São Paulo, Brazil, Eichenberger attended Northwestern Oklahoma State University where he was a member of the basketball team all four years and graduated with his degree in health and sports science.
Eichenberger interned for a sports development organization in Las Vegas where he trained current and future NBA players after graduating college. He then came to Denver to work as a personal trainer specializing in athletic strength and conditioning at Forza Fitness for three years before being hired into his current role with the Nuggets.
Eichenberger is an NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist and owns a master’s degree in Kinesiology. He was also recently certified as a Corrective Exercise Specialist (CES) through NASM.
Eichenberger resides in Denver with his girlfriend Carly and their newborn daughter Gia.
Assistant Athletic Trainer/Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach
Jason Miller enters his third year with the Denver Nuggets as Assistant Athletic Trainer/Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach.
Throughout the year, Miller assists both Head Athletic Trainer Dan Shimensky and Director of Performance/Head Strength and Conditioning Coach/Assistant Coach Steve Hess. Some of his duties include treatment and rehabilitation of injuries, strengthening and conditioning of players, administering concussion tests and ordering of medical supplies.
Miller’s background includes extensive experience in the medical field for a variety of sports. After graduating from the University of Iowa with a degree in exercise science, Miller spent two years as a graduate assistant with Auburn University’s football program while he received his master’s degree in higher education.
Miller then transitioned to head trainer for Auburn’s men’s basketball program for four years before taking the head trainer job with the University of Connecticut’s men’s basketball program. During his three-year stretch with UConn, Miller was a part of the 2004 NCAA National Title winning team led by Ben Gordon and Emeka Okafor.
His next stop was with the University of Washington where he spent one year as both the assistant trainer for the football team and the head trainer for the baseball team. Miller then jumped back to basketball as the head athletic trainer for the Oklahoma State men’s team for eight years before being hired to his current role with Denver.
Miller and his wife Teresa reside in Denver with their sons Henry (4) and Sawyer, who was born on Sept. 22, 2014.
Dr. Short joined the Denver Nuggets in the fall of 2014 as the Team Physical Therapist and Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach. Prior to joining the Nuggets, he served in private practice at Back in Motion Physical Therapy in Kingsford, MI.
Dr. Short graduated with a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from the University of Dayton after serving with the Oklahoma City Thunder during the 2013-14 season. While at UD, he conducted research for multiple NBA organizations, presented research nationally and was awarded the UD DPT Student Achievement Award.
From 2005-2010, he earned a dual undergraduate degree in Biology and Exercise Science from Michigan Tech University while quarterbacking the Huskies football team. Dr. Short also received a Minor in Psychology, a Certificate in Coaching and became a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist during his tenure.
In addition to his duties with the Nuggets, Dr. Short is a Fellow-in-Training through the American Academy of Orthopaedic Manual Physical Therapists and Regis University. He has set out for board certification through American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties and obtained certifications in various clinical subspecialties.
Sparky Gonzales is in his 16th year as equipment manager, but his history with the Nuggets goes back much further than that. Gonzales is in his 38th year of service with the Nuggets, having served in a variety of capacities.
In 1977, Gonzales joined the Nuggets performing part-time locker room and bench security. He served as equipment manager from 1989-91. From 1992 until his hire in 2001, Gonzales assisted the Nuggets media relations department as a jack-of-all-trades on game nights. As equipment manager, Gonzales orders and maintains all of the team’s equipment at home and on the road.
Gonzales, a Denver native, and his wife Tammy were married in 1998. He enjoys fishing, camping and golfing in his spare time.