April 08, 2008
With just over a week to go in the regular season, it's about time we start engraving names into the end of the year hardware. Today we start with the Coach of the Year award. You can cast your vote below, but first a quick look at some candidates:
Rick Adelman, Rockets: Of 77 games, Tracy McGrady has played just 62, and Yao Ming 55, yet Houston has managed to compile the 5th highest winning percentage in the L. Adelman has made excellent use of Rafer Alston, Shane Battier, Luis Scola and Mike Harris. (Who?) Exactly. And oh, 22-straight.
Maurice Cheeks, 76ers: Mo's got Sixers chairman Ed Snider's vote: "Mo is coach of the year. He should be No. 1. He took a team that you and all the other experts picked for dead last and he got us in the playoffs, and maybe a little higher than No. 8. Maybe seven, six or five, who knows?"
Doc Rivers, Celtics: In one year, Doc Rivers has gone from the joke of the league to coach of the 61-15 champ favorites. That's 37 more wins than last season's disaster. Forget about Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen ... 60 wins is still 60 wins. Ubuntu.
Byron Scott, Hornets: You're lying if you thought the Hornets would be buzzing around the top of the West this season. MVP point guard Chris Paul has had plenty to do with it, as has young All-Star forward David West, but take into consideration the Hornets' lack of depth, and it's amazing to think Scott has this team challenging for a ring.
Stan Van Gundy, Magic: Along with guiding the Magic to 50 wins and the third-seed, SVG has helped polish Dwight Howard's offensive game and turned an eight-year vet (Hedo Turkoglu) into a borderline All-Star. Impressive.
Honorable mentions: Phil Jackson, Lakers; Eddie Jordan, Wizards; Jerry Sloan, Jazz.