PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) _ Longtime NBA coach Jim Lynam joined the Portland Trail Blazers on Saturday as an assistant.

``Jim will be a terrific addition to the Blazers family,'' Blazers general manager Bob Whitsitt said. ``He brings a wealth of experience and an unmatched enthusiasm for the game.''

The Blazers hired Maurice Cheeks as head coach June 27. Lynam will join Dan Panaggio on Cheeks' staff.

Lynam began his NBA coaching career with the Blazers in 1981 as an assistant. His most recent NBA job was as an assistant with the New Jersey Nets in the 1999-2000 season.

He has also held head coaching positions with Washington, Philadelphia and the Los Angeles Clippers.

``I am thrilled to join the Trail Blazers staff,'' he said. ``It's a great opportunity and I'm looking forward to working with Maurice and the entire organization.''