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Best Coach in all of the NBA

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After having a solid front office to put all the pieces of the puzzle on the table, it takes a great coach to make them fit together. Who are the best coaches in the NBA? Well we rank them 30-1.

Jeff Gross

The NBA head coach can sometimes be the most thankless job in the league.  When a team wins, the credit goes to the star player nine times out of ten. And if the team is failing miserably on the court, it isn't the players fault, it's the coach, and he is the first one to get blame and usually will lose his job because of it.

How does the crop of coaches look like this year? We have a lot of first year coaches, only four coaches who have won a championship, and two others who have appeared in a conference finals.

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30


Quin Snyder


30


27


29.2

Career Record: 0-0
Playoff Record: 0-0

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

This is Snyder's first try as an NBA head coach and he should definitely be better than his predecessor.  He should have been in this position many years before, but personal demons slowed down his ascension.  He has a lot of young, moldable talent, and it will be interesting to see what he can do with it.

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29


Derek Fisher


30


23


28.1

Career Record: 0-0
Playoff Record: 0-0

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

I am not a fan of players stepping right off the floor and going into the head coaching spot.  Fisher is a great basketball mind and outside of Phil Jackson he is probably the best one to teach it.  I would have liked to see Fisher pay some dues as an assistant for a couple years first, but you could argue that's basically what he did the last few years in Oklahoma City.

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28

Jason Kidd


30


19


26.2

Career Record: 44-38
Playoff Record: 5-7

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

The man who took the helm of a bad Milwaukee team who needs a lot of leadership and a lot of practice.  If you are to believe his former team, Kidd provided neither of these things last year.

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27


Steve Kerr


22


29


25.5

Career Record: 0-0
Playoff Record: 0-0

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

Just because you watch a lot of basketball, talk about basketball constantly, and again talk about basketball a lot, doesn't mean you should be a head coach.  Kerr could be up for the task, but we could potentially swap in Zach Lowe and have similar results. Just see his stint as Suns GM.

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26


Byron Scott


27


19


23.8

Career Record: 416-521
Playoff Record: 33-24

Conference Championships: 2
NBA Championships: 0

Hey! The Lakers hired another retread coach and expect to win a championship!

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25

Flip Saunders

Flip Saunders


28


12


22.9

Career Record: 638-526
Playoff Record: 47-51

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

Speaking of retreads.

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24


Kevin McHale


26


16


21.9

Career Record: 172-152
Playoff Record: 4-8

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

Kevin McHale is a legend... as a player.  I'm not so sure he has the makeup to be a championship caliber coach at the NBA level. Especially with this Rockets team.

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23


Steve Clifford


29


15


21.2

Career Record: 43-39
Playoff Record: 0-4

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

There is something to be said about being able to coach two consecutive years under a Michael Jordan run team.

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22


Jacque Vaughn


30


16


20.8

Career Record: 43-121
Playoff Record: 0-0

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

For some reason I think Vaughn is going to be a good coach in this league.  I don't think you should judge him by his record now.  Look at the talent he's been handed!  Orlando will be improved this season.

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21


Brian Shaw


27


18


20.5

Career Record: 36-46
Playoff Record: 0-0

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

Due to half the team being injured last season we didn't get to see what type of coach Shaw could fully be.  His players did show improvement under him over Karl from the previous season, but it could have also been the extra minutes being played due to injury.

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20


Lionel Hollins


28


12


20.0

Career Record: 214-201
Playoff Record: 18-17

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

Hollins is going to be a huge improvement over Jason Kidd in Brooklyn.  It will definitely be interesting to see what type of defense and grind he can get out of this older team.  Especially guys like Deron Williams and Joe Johnson.

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19


Brett Brown


28


10


19.8

Career Record: 19-63
Playoff Record: 0-0

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

There wasn't a whole lot of talent of that 76ers team last year.  Brett Brown might have been responsible for every one of their wins.  If that is the case we should probably move him up this list.

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18

SAC_Malone_Michael

Mike Malone


25


15


18.7

Career Record: 28-54
Playoff Record: 0-0

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

Here is another guy like Shaw and Snyder that should have gotten his shot to be a head coach a lot sooner, but for whatever reason it took him a while to land a head coaching gig despite being touted as the best assistant in the league.  He will make Sacramento a good team.

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17


Frank Vogel


20


10


16.5

Career Record: 167-100
Playoff Record: 28-26

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships
: 0

Vogel just got himself an extension, good for him!  There are some nights when I think he's probably a top five coach in the league and other nights where I wonder if he's fit to coach a middle school team.

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16


Monty Williams


25


9


16.2

Career Record: 128-184
Playoff Record: 2-4

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

Constant injuries really derailed what the Pelicans could have been last year, but Williams was able to get the absolute most of his team night in and night out.  That's admirable.  I think he's going to get his team into the postseason this season or next.

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15


Scott Brooks


26


7


15.5

Career Record: 293-170
Playoff Record: 39-34

Conference Championships: 1
NBA Championships: 0

I feel some bias crept into this ranking as Brooks is definitely a few spots too low.  You have to remember this is a man that thoroughly out-coached Pop in the 2012 Western Conference Finals.

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14

WAS_Wittman_Randy

Randy Wittman


29


11


15.4

Career Record: 191-329
Playoff Record: 6-5

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

Did you know the previous seven seasons before last year Randy Wittman never led a team to at least a .400 win percentage?  Don't think he'll have that issue with this Washington team for the foreseeable future.

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13

TOR_Casey_Dwane

Dwane Casey


18


11


13.5

Career Record: 158-194
Playoff Record: 3-4

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

Casey has always possessed the pedigree to be a solid coach in this league, he just never had a good front office to put a good team on the floor for him.  Now he has it in Toronto and The North shall be all the better for it.

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12


Stan Van Gundy


23


8


12.5

Career Record: 371-208
Playoff Record: 48-39

Conference Championships: 1
NBA Championships: 0

His coaching should definitely bring some improvement to Detroit.

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11


Dave Joerger


21


6


11.9

Career Record: 50-32
Playoff Record: 3-4

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

It almost seems like the Grizzlies replaced Hollins with a more offensive minded version of himself.  I like the extra dimension that Joerger brings to the Grizz, makes them a more complete team.

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10


Brad Stevens


14


10


11.3

Career Record: 25-57
Playoff Record: 0-0

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

I am absolutely certain that Brad Stevens is going to win multiple championships in the NBA.  You get him talent that is at or just below replacement level and he'll do some amazing things.  Watch for the Celtics to make a big jump this season.

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9


David Blatt


22


7


10.6

Career Record: 0-0
Playoff Record: 0-0

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

When the Cavaliers hired Blatt most people had no idea who he was and I was a little saddened because this was a dark horse for a guy that I wanted to eventually be the Sonics' coach.  For people who don't know who he is, his coaching style is like if you had Phil Jackson running a Mike D'Antoni speed offense with a Tom Thibodeau defense.  Have to see how fast the Cavs adjust to this style.

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8


Mike Budenholzer


18


7


8.5

Career Record: 38-44
Playoff Record: 3-4

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

Here is the second member of the Pop coaching tree on our list.  Despite a lot of injuries to key players he guided the Hawks to the playoffs and a game away from upsetting the #1 seed Indiana Pacers.  He definitely got the best of Vogel in that series, but talent was just too much to overcome.

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7

POR_Stotts_Terry

Terry Stotts


17


4


8.2

Career Record: 202-245
Playoff Record: 6-10

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

Stotts is another guy who was saddled with terrible talent in his early coaching stints and did not last long in his initial jobs. He's not got a very young, very good team in Portland that is improving year by year.  You can see a little George Karl in him.

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6


Erik Spoelstra


11


4


6.4

Career Record: 314-162
Playoff Record: 63-36

Conference Championships: 4
NBA Championships: 2

A lot of people say that all his success is due to LeBron James, but you can't win two titles in four trips to the Finals without having some coaching talent.  It will be interesting to see what happens when the talent of James is replaced with Luol Deng.

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5

PHO_Hornacek_Jeff

Jeff Hornacek


14


4


5.5

Career Record: 48-34
Playoff Record: 0-0

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

You want to talk about a debut?  He took a team that wasn't supposed to win 20 games and had them fighting for a playoff spot up until the final day of the season.  If the Suns can stay as healthy, they could be extremely dangerous in the postseason for any team.

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4


Rick Carlisle


9


2


4.5

Career Record: 569-399
Playoff Record: 56-54

Conference Championships: 1
NBA Championships: 1

My personal belief is that Carlisle is the second best coach in the league behind Pop.  Outside of Dirk he hasn't exactly ever had a second superstar or go to player that can be relied on, yet he's won a championship and Dallas is always a good team.

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3


Doc Rivers


8


2


3.6

Career Record: 644-498
Playoff Record: 70-64

Conference Championships: 2
NBA Championships: 1

Rivers might be a little iffy when it comes to the X's and O's, but you know you are going to get players that are going to be sound fundamentally, will give their best effort defensively and will always improve on various aspects of their game during the season and in the offseason.

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2


Tom Thibodeau


5


2


2.6

Career Record: 205-107
Playoff Record: 17-22

Conference Championships: 0
NBA Championships: 0

The singular knock that I have on Thibodeau is his minutes rotation.  He wants to win so bad that he will run his guys into the ground and come the end of the season they just don't have the legs.  I think he'll learn to cut back minutes with the team this year and rely on his much deeper bench than in years passed.

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1

Gregg Popovich

Gregg Popovich


1


1


1.0

Career Record: 967-443
Playoff Record: 149-90

Conference Championships: 6
NBA Championships
: 5

Outside of Phil Jackson and Red Auerbach is there another coach that has had a better career?  You will really be hard pressed to find another coach that has had this level of success in under 20 years of coaching.  One more championship and Pop will pass Pat Riley and John Kundla into third all time.