Fraser Valley Bandits named a new head coach on Wednesday, Feb. 8, announcing former Poland men’s national basketball team head coach Mike Taylor will serve as the club’s new head coach for the upcoming Canadian Elite Basketball League (CEBL) season.
Taylor’s resume includes the FIBA Basketball World Cup and EuroBasket tournaments, the Basketball Bundesliga (first division of German professional basketball) and the NBA Development League All-Star Game (now known as the G League).
The 49-year-old from Clarion, Pa., most recently coached for the Polish national team from 2014 to 2021.
When Taylor took over the program, Poland was ranked 42nd in the world. Today, the program is ranked 13th.
“Mike is a world-class coach with a world-class resume. Mike is an extremely high level and high profile coach. He is an even better person. Mike has proven to be able to develop players while building very successful teams at extremely high levels. What coach Taylor accomplished as head coach of the Polish national team is truly remarkable and is a very special accomplishment,” Bandits general manager Kyle Julius said.
“Mike is a tremendous addition to our organization. He is a seasoned professional who has won championships and has earned international praise for his positive outlook, dedication to building leaders and his ability to build a cohesive group that plays for each other, rather than the individual. I am excited to welcome Mike to the Fraser Valley and to introduce him to the best fans in the CEBL,” said Bandits president Dylan Kular.
“I would like to thank Kyle, Dylan and the entire Fraser Valley Bandits organization for this exciting opportunity. Looking ahead to the season, I am focused on building on the team’s established success and to help the Bandits reach new heights. The CEBL is a fun, rising league and we are preparing for a great summer in the Fraser Valley,” Taylor said.
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Fraser Valley opens its season on the road on Wednesday, May 25 against the Ottawa BlackJacks. Following a three-game road swing to open the year, the Bandits will make their debut at Langley Events Centre against the Saskatchewan Rattlers on Saturday, June 4 at 2 p.m.
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