Race to Coach of the Year


Sultan of Swat
Staff member
SECAUCUS, N.J., April 12 -- There are two roads you can take when it comes to voting for the Coach of the Year.

On your right, there is Phil Jackson Way. This will lead you to a cul de sac full of mansions inhabited by more-than 65 game winners like Jackson (Chicago, 72-10 in '95-96), Tom Heinsohn (Boston, 68-14 in '72-73) and Bill Sharman (L.A. Lakers, 69-13 in '71-72).
Take a left and you're driving down Hubie Brown Boulevard. This will lead you to a city block full of row homes filled with less-than 45 game winners like Hubie (the 41-41 with Atlanta in '77-78, not the 50-32 with Memphis in '03-04), Doc Rivers (Orlando, 41-41 in '99-00), Gene Shue (Washington, 43-29 in '81-82), Johny Kerr (Chicago, 33-48 in '66-67) and Phil Johnson (Kansas City-Omaha Kings, 44-38 in '74-75).
What's more impressive; out-right dominance or turning a team around?
The challenge for a coach that establishes his team as the best in the league is carrying the bullseye on his back all season. Every opponent steps it up a level to gauge their abilities against the best and road arenas become trecherous places to play. Plus, motivating a team to keep up the intensity when they have a 10-game lead in their division by the All-Star break is no easy task.
The challenge for a coach that takes his team from the lottery to the playoff contention is changing a culture of losing and getting his players to believe in themselves. His greatest accomplishment is instilling the confidence needed to walk out onto the court and think, "We're supposed to win this game, we're going to win this game," before the ball is even tipped.
And, of course, x-factors like having a core of young players versus older vets, or dealing with injuries to star players can gain brownie points for a coach in either scenario. With all that being said, here is how I think the voting should go who gets the Red Auerbach Trophy for the seaon that started with Red smoking his last cigar:



Registered Member
If I take the Phil Jackson way I arrive at Avery Johnson and Hubie Brown Boulevard leads me down to Jeff Van Gundy (sorry Sloan, your guys just haven't been playing well lately).

I just think the team chemistry of the Mavs is too phenomenal not to give it to Avery. I think this is a team that overachieves. When I look at the roster, I no doubt see a great team, but I don't see as good a team as their record was a while ago (they've stepped their foot off the pedal starting with the Denver game. I was there by the way so I know ;)) Then I take into consideration how they started 0-4 and it makes you respect Avery even more. Then I take into consideration the expectations they had this season and overcoming what seemed like a huge psychological blow from the finals and I conclude that Avery Johnson is already one of the best coaches of all time.


Sultan of Swat
Staff member
Jeff Van Gundy is a great choice his team suffered a lot of injuries this year to there key players like McGrady and Yao Ming, and Bonzi Wells has missed a lot of game due to personal reasons, and this team is still one of the best.

Sloan has done a great job with the Jazz this season, and he does deserve consideration, but I believe that he will fall short once again this season.

Johnson is a real good coach, but we have to remember that he has three superstars on this league which really helps him out, I think he'll win it because of his record, but I don't think he deserves it.

Mitchell has done a great job this season, the Raptors are currently holding the third spot in the Eastern Conference, and last year they were one of the worst teams in the NBA. There's a lot of good role players on this team and they have two stars in Bosh and Ford. Personally I think he deserves it, but he will probably finish second or third. Even Sir Charles has said that Mitchell should win the award.


#1 Spammer of FC
I think that Sloan should get it because he basically turned the whole team around there and made them into a contender in the west more so then their past few seasons. However more then likely Avery will get it because lets face it Dallas has been letal all season and he really took them from an 0-4 team to one of the best teams in the NBA. Van Gundy has done a huge job this year but I think that there are a couple more people that deserve it a little more then he does.