Former Sixers Assistant Coach, NBA Player Sean Rooks Has Died

Rooks, who helped coach the 76ers since 2014, was only 46. The cause of death is not yet known.

Sean Rooks with Shaquille O'Neal as members of the Los Angeles Lakers in 1996.

Sean Rooks with Shaquille O’Neal as members of the Los Angeles Lakers in 1996.

Sean Rooks, an assistant coach for the Philadelphia 76ers and a 12-year NBA veteran, died Tuesday in Philadelphia.

Rooks started working for the NBA development league in 2007 and specialized in coaching player development for the 76ers since 2014. His contract with the 76ers was not going to be renewed for this season, the Inquirer reports.

“It is with a profound deal of sadness that we mourn the sudden loss of a beloved son, father and friend, Sean Rooks,” Sixers co-managing owners Josh Harris and David Blitzer said in a statement Tuesday night. “Words simply cannot express the heartbreak and shock our entire organization is feeling over this loss.”

“Sean will be remembered not for his accomplishments on the court – of which there were many – but for his vibrant personality, positive outlook and the genuine care he had for everyone in his life,” the statement continues.

According to Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical, Rooks had interviewed for an assistant coaching job with the New York Knicks just hours before he “collapsed and died in a Philadelphia restaurant.”

The cause of his death is not yet confirmed.

During his 1993-2004 NBA tenure, Rooks played for several teams, including both the Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers, the Dallas Mavericks, the Orlando Magic, the Atlanta Hawks, the Minnesota Timberwolves and the New Orleans Pelicans. He was selected by Dallas in the second round of the NBA draft in 1992.

Rooks, who attended the University of Arizona, averaged 6.2 points over the course of his 749 NBA games.

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