The season in The National Basketball Association has whizzed by as we
are on the cusp of the postseason. There have been some tremendous
performances on the court, but this time I am paying homage to the men
who sit on the bench wearing the custom made suits while barking out
plays. The head coaches in The NBA only get recognized when they get
fired, win a championship, or the receive a technical foul. The men on
this list might not win an NBA Championship this year, but they all have
the potential to win The NBA’s coveted Coach of The Year award.
Tom Thibodeau-Chicago Bulls
Chicago Bulls won 50 games last year in the shortened 66-game NBA
season. The Bulls were hopeful to have another shot at The Miami Heat in
The Eastern Conference Finals until All-Star point guard Derrick Rose
suffered an ACL injury in the first game of The Eastern Conference
Playoffs against The Philadelphia 76ers. The Bulls would go on to lose
the series in six games.
is right in the mix in The Eastern Conference. The Bulls are 3 games
behind The Indiana Pacers for first place in The Central Division while
they are currently holding down fifth place in The Eastern Conference.
Thibodeau, The Bulls have made use of their other strengths while making
their weaknesses. The Bulls are currently tied for fifth in rebounding
as they are averaging 43.7 per game. Forwards Carlos Boozer and Joakim
Noah have combined to average 20.7 rebounds per game as they both are in
the top 15 in The NBA for rebounding. Defense has always been
Thibodeau’s calling card and The Bulls are third in The NBA for
opponents field-goal percentage at 43 percent which includes only
allowing opponents to shoot 33 percent behind the three-point arc.
Bulls have had some questionable losses, but they have also had some
tremendous wins in Rose’s absence. The Bulls have defeated The Heat once
this season while they hold two victories over The New York Knicks who
are both ahead of them in the standings.
point. The rehab is progressing as Thibodeau hopes to have him back for
the end of the regular season with the playoffs in mind. The Bulls
haven’t given up on the season as they are proving to be a mentally
tough team without Rose. Credit for that must be thrust on the shoulders
Frank Vogel-Indiana Pacers
All-Star forward Danny
Granger missed the first 55 games of the season due to a knee injury,
but The Pacers haven’t skipped a beat under head coach Frank Vogel. The
Pacers are currently sitting atop The Central Division with a team
consisting of unselfish basketball players. The Pacers have made their
living at the defensive end as no team in The NBA currently allows fewer
points that them as they are only giving up 89.6 points per game.
Forwards Paul George and David West have picked up the slack in
Granger’s absence as both are averaging over 17 points per game. The
Pacers are the only team in The Eastern Conference that The Miami Heat
have not defeated this season.
The Pacers were up 2-1 in last
year’s Eastern Conference Semifinals series against The Heat, before
Miami won the next three games to win the series. This season, The Heat
are averaging nearly 104 points per game, but they have been derailed
against Indiana as they are only averaging 83 points in their two
Now that Granger is back with a confident George and West, this team is expected to do big things in the playoffs.
what you want about San Antonio Spurs head coach Greg Popovich, but
this team has been one of the most consistent teams in professional
sports over the last two decades. Since 1997, The Spurs have only had
one season under Popovich in which they didn’t win at least 50 games. At
47-14, The Spurs are staring another 50-win season down the barrel. The
Spurs are one of the most balanced teams in The NBA as they boast six
players who average double figures in scoring. The Spurs are led by
All-Star point guard Tony Parker who is averaging 21 points per game.
is the reigning NBA Coach of The Year as The Spurs went 50-16 in a
shortened NBA regular season last year as they advanced to The Western
Conference Finals. This season, Popovich’s coaching will be tested as
Parker recently suffered an ankle injury which might keep him out of
action for one month.
Offensively, The Spurs are currently fifth
in The NBA as far as three-point field-goal percentage at 38 percent.
Shooting guard Danny Green and forward Matt Bonner are the two main
sharpshooters on this team as they are both knocking down over 40
percent of their shots from long range. Forward Tim Duncan has not
averaged more than 20 points in a season for the last six years which is
by design as Popovich has made Parker the focal point of the offense.
Duncan has never complained as he has been a team player which is a
testament to Popovich. Once again The Spurs are poised to make a deep
run in The Western Conference Playoffs this season.