Philadelphia 76ers assistant coach Dave Joerger is stepping from the team to continue cancer treatments. According to ESPN, Joerger has a form of “head and neck” cancer.
The 47-year-old Joerger reportedly told the team after their loss to the Pacers on Saturday night about his diagnosis.
Joerger released the following statement through the team:
“I will be stepping away from the bench, effective immediately, as I was recently diagnosed with a treatable form of cancer. I will take this time to focus on my health and I look forward to rejoining the team once I’ve completed the treatment process.
“Over the last few months, I learned the importance of self-evaluation and care, early detection and annual medical exams. I know I will beat this diagnosis with the help of my world-class medical team at the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center – Jefferson Health, under the direction of Dr. David M. Cognetti, Dr. Voichita Bar Ad and Dr. Jennifer Johnson. I would like to thank the entire medical team and support staff at Jefferson Health for their extraordinary care. I would also like to acknowledge Josh Harris, David Blitzer, Doc Rivers, Daryl Morey, Elton Brand and the entire 76ers organization. Their unwavering support has allowed me to concentrate all of my efforts towards beating cancer. Most importantly, thank you to my wife Kimberly and my loving family who continue to provide me with strength.
“The game of basketball has given me so much, highlighted by the extended support system and lifelong friendships I have been able to form. I look forward to using my platform to continue to raise awareness and help support the fight against cancer.”
76ers head coach Doc Rivers said the following about Joerger:
“Dave is not only one of the most talented and respected coaches in the NBA, but he’s a great friend, colleague, husband and father. The same positivity, enthusiasm and grit that have made him a successful coach will also carry him through his fight against cancer. I know I speak for everyone at the 76ers when I say, “Get well soon, we love you and we’ll be with you throughout this entire process. Your battle is our battle.”
Joerger joined the 76ers last season as assistant after being a head coach in Memphis and Sacramento.