Meyers Drysdale named V.P., Cox President & COO, Gaines adds GM tag

Phoenix Mercury Announces Front Office Realignment

Posted: Nov. 7, 2011

The Phoenix Mercury announced a realignment of its front office and basketball operations department today. Ann Meyers Drysdale was named Vice President, Amber Cox was named President and Chief Operating Officer and Head Coach Corey Gaines added general manager responsibilities.

Meyers Drysdale, formerly team President & General Manager, moves into the role of Vice President of the Mercury, a role the Hall of Famer also serves with the Phoenix Suns. Meyers Drysdale, who started with the Suns and Mercury in 2007, will provide consultation on players as well as assist in community and broadcasting roles with both teams.

“This was a great time for me to make this move. It allows me to stay involved in the Mercury’s basketball operations and provides me with the flexibility to commit to other opportunities, such as broadcasting more collegiate games and the Olympics this summer.” Meyers Drysdale said. “I look forward to continuing to collaborate with Amber and Corey in an effort to maintain the Mercury's status as one of the top franchises in the WNBA.”

Cox remains with the Mercury as President and COO overseeing all basketball and business operations. Originally the Director of Marketing for the team from 2005-2010, Cox was promoted to COO in July 2010.

“I am excited about the opportunity to expand my role within this organization,” Cox said. “Annie and I have worked together since 2007. Our roles may be shifting, but we remain cohesive in our missions – putting a championship-caliber team on the court every season and continuing to grow our business. I am humbled by her faith in my abilities and appreciative of her support.”

Gaines, the winningest head coach in franchise history, adds the General Manager tag in his seventh season with the team. Gaines started as an assistant coach in 2006 under Paul Westhead and was promoted to head coach in 2008. On the sideline for both championship seasons, Gaines has led the Mercury to three consecutive Western Conference Finals appearances as Head Coach, including winning the WNBA championship in 2009.

“Annie has put together a great core group of players over the last five years that keeps us a title-contending team each season,” Gaines said. “I’m excited about the future of our team and the potential to make even more improvements this offseason.”

The Mercury finished the 2011 regular season with a 19-15 record and advanced to the Western Conference Finals after defeating the Seattle Storm 2-1 in the conference semifinals. Seeded third in the West, Phoenix overcame a one-game deficit to the Storm in the best-of-three series winning Game 2 at home and wiping away an 18-point deficit to win Game 3 at Key Arena, its first win in Seattle since 2009. Top-seeded Minnesota, the eventual WNBA champion, defeated the Mercury 2-0 in the conference finals.