George Karl of the Denver Nuggets won Coach of the Year today. Karl’s Nuggets won 57 games this season–a total good for fourth in the NBA. The Nuggets also had a 15 game winning streak that was largely undermined by the Miami Heat’s winning streak.
The Nuggets won 57 games after a slow start to the year when most of their games were on the road. Karl weathered the storm and coached this team to its new franchise record in wins.
The Nuggets are largely known for not having an All-Star player since Carmelo Anthony was traded to the New York Knicks. Karl has done an excellent job developing players into working pieces of a great offensive NBA system. His defensive style is a bit unorthodox, but it works for the personnel that he has on the roster.
The Nuggets were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs by the Golden State Warriors. The hot shooting of Stephen Curry and the Warriors were enough to put out the Nuggets. The Nuggets were thought to be a legitimate title contender.
Karl finished 1st with 62 first place votes. Erik Spoelstra was a distant 2nd, Mike Woodson was 3rd, Gregg Popovich was 4th and Frank Vogel was 5th.
As for the Celtics’ side of things, Doc Rivers finished 13th in the coach of the year voting. This year for the Celtics was pretty tumultuous–I’m not sure if any coach could’ve handled it.
The Celtics went through the season with injuries to some of their best players. They lost Rajon Rondo and Jared Sullinger for the season. Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett were battling through injuries all season, Avery Bradley didn’t return to the team until January and Leandro Barbosa was lost for the season only a few weeks after that.
This team struggled to find depth anywhere and they paid for it in wins. Rivers did a fantastic job of dealing with some of the circumstances he was presented with, but it wasn’t good enough for Coach of the Year.
George Karl surely deserved this award this year. Congratulations to him and the Denver Nuggets on a job well done.
|George Karl, Den||62||26||16||404|
|Erik Spoelstra, Mia||24||17||19||190|
|Mike Woodson, NY||6||28||13||127|
|Gregg Popovich, SA||11||16||17||120|
|Frank Vogel, Ind||3||11||12||60|
|Lionel Hollins, Mem||6||4||13||55|
|Mark Jackson, GS||3||6||14||47|
|Tom Thibodeau, Chi||2||7||9||40|
|Kevin McHale, Hou||1||3||3||17|
|P.J. Carlesimo, Bkn||1||1||-||8|
|Vinny Del Negro, LAC||1||1||-||8|
|Larry Drew, Atl||1||-||1||6|
|Doc Rivers, Bos||-||1||1||4|
|Scott Brooks, OKC||-||-||3||3|
Chart brought to you via Celticsblog.com