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DerekRE_3
12-23-2009, 05:45 PM
The early contender for coach of the year doesn't know if he'll be coaching next year.

Well, chances are pretty good that Mike Woodson will draw a check from somebody somewhere in 2010 and beyond. It just might not be in Atlanta. As good as the Hawks have been this season, showing tremendous growth and scoring some fairly impressive KO victories, Woodson is working without a safety net. Although he owns the longest coaching tenure with one team in the Eastern Conference at six years, this is the last year of his deal and nothing's on the table. Hawks general manager Rick Sund is taking a wait-and-see approach before deciding if Woodson is worth an extension.

Neither is willing to discus Woodson's status, at least not publicly. You ask Woodson, you get "I'd rather not talk about my situation," but clearly, not only does Woodson want to stay in Atlanta, he thinks he has deserved the right to stay.

One of his pals in the coaching biz said: "What else does he have to prove?"

It does seem like a strange situation for Woodson, who heads our list of best coaching performances so far in 2009-10. Usually, teams avoid any situation where a coach is perceived to be a lame duck, although in Woodson's case, that's a big stretch. His job is hardly in jeopardy. And if nothing else, he's setting himself for a big financial score this summer. As coaching free agents go, he could be the LeBron James of the market, especially if the Hawks reach the NBA Finals, which isn't a silly notion.

It's been a long, strange trip for Woodson ever since he left the Larry Brown nest and joined the Hawks. He won 13 games his first season, then 26, then 30. By season four, the Hawks GM at the time, Billy Knight, wanted to fire Woodson. Knight ended up getting fired himself by the new ownership group. Sund took over and gave Woodson a two-year deal, not a full vote of confidence, but not a dismissal, either.

Well, since then, Woodson won 47 games and then a round in the playoffs with an injured team. The young Hawks have obviously grown and matured on his watch. And they're among the top 5 or 6 teams in basketball, with impressive wins against the Celtics, Jazz, Mavericks and Blazers. Woodson must be doing something right.

What's the reason to delay an extension? Well, there's the Dick Jauron lesson. The Buffalo Bills were so smitten by his 5-1 start last season they gave him a 3-year extension on the spot. Then the Bills finished out 2-8. Because of the contract, they were stuck with a coach they eventually fired this season when the losing continued. Maybe some teams can simply write off the financial headaches of letting coaches go with years and millions of dollars left on their contract, but not the Hawks.

Besides, the Hawks aren't under any pressure to act right this minute. Conducting negotiations with a coach during the season could turn into a distraction. Evidently the Hawks want to see what Woodson's team does in the spring before they make a long-term commitment. And suppose Woodson takes another job, you ask? Well, there'd be no shortage of coaches willing to take over a good, young Atlanta team. So the Hawks own the leverage here.

Right now anyway, Woodson and the Hawks are good for one another and most likely they'll realize it next summer when his contract is up. A coach of the year award would only strengthen the relationship and seal the deal.

Woodson's hardly the only coach in the running for that honor, however.

Alvin Gentry, Suns
The Terry Porter experiment was a disaster and the Suns could've saved themselves the headache had they simply elevated Gentry instead. Better late than never, though, and the Suns are one of the bigger surprises this season under Gentry, a former top assistant to Mike D'Anton and like Woodson, also from the Larry Brown coaching tree. He has an obviously good relationship with Steve Nash, or else Gentry wouldn't be the coach. He found a way to squeeze something out of Channing Frye and the Suns' defense, while hardly the best, is averaging two fewer points a game than last year.

Rick Adelman, Rockets
No Yao Ming, and essentially no T-Mac, but no problem so far for the Rockets, who are tough to beat yet playing without a big-time star. That's not such a surprise, considering the guy on the bench. What coaches, other than Phil Jackson and Gregg Popovich, have been more consistent this decade than Adelman? He knows how to handle stars and 12th men as well as anybody. He connected with Ron Artest; that's all you need to know. Strange but true: Sam Mitchell and Avery Johnson have more coach of the year awards than Adelman.

Scott Brooks, Thunder
Among the up-and-comers, Brooks is someone to watch. One of the hardest things for a coach is getting a young team to play defense. That's what's happening in Oklahoma City, where the Thunder allow less than 96 points and 45 percent shooting a game, among the best in basketball. Along with Kevin Durant, defense is keeping them competitive and the fans interested.

Source: nba.com (http://www.nba.com/2009/news/features/shaun_powell/12/22/coaches.doing.well/index.html?ls=iref:nbahpt1)

Good to see Scott Brooks get some recognition, he has done a great job with the Thunder. I also find it surprising that Mike Woodson hasn't received an extension yet.

JordansBulls
12-23-2009, 05:48 PM
Rick Adelman hands down. 5th seed out west right now. Have beaten LA and Dallas on the road as well as Cle at Toyota Center. And done all of this with a bunch of role players.

ProdigyI
12-23-2009, 05:52 PM
Vinny Del Negro obviously.

:facepalm:

ProdigyI
12-23-2009, 05:52 PM
sigh

DerekRE_3
12-23-2009, 05:54 PM
Rick Adelman hands down. 5th seed out west right now. Have beaten LA and Dallas on the road as well as Cle at Toyota Center. And done all of this with a bunch of role players.

Rick Adelman seems to thrive when his best players go down. In the 2003-2004 season, the year Webber was recovering from knee surgery, the Kings still went 55-27 without their best player. The year before with Webber they went 59-23.

Kakaroach
12-23-2009, 05:54 PM
Adelman right now for me. Brooks might get it if his team makes the playoffs.

jimbobjarree
12-23-2009, 06:07 PM
woodson or Gentry for me

B.JenningsMVP
12-23-2009, 06:24 PM
Paul Westphal be doing good for the Kings

Lakersfan2483
12-23-2009, 06:59 PM
Rick Adelman, Phil Jackson, Paul Westphal and Scott Brooks are all good candidates so far.

Lakersfan2483
12-23-2009, 07:00 PM
Mike Woodson as well.

JnasD
12-23-2009, 07:18 PM
Mike Dantoni. GO KNICKS.

Toenail Clipper
12-23-2009, 07:20 PM
Mike Dunleavy, he got his 500 win this season. :D LMAO

iggypop123
12-23-2009, 07:20 PM
so basically if you are an elite team your coach is disqualified from the award?

RaptorsFanatic
12-23-2009, 07:25 PM
Kiki Vandeweghe VIA Lawrence Frank.

Vinny642
12-23-2009, 07:27 PM
Brooks or Paul Westphal with Adelman as an honorable mention.

Iodine
12-24-2009, 05:35 AM
so basically if you are an elite team your coach is disqualified from the award?

Its really the "coach of the surprise team of the NBA" award


FRANK HAMBLEN

jmtapia
12-24-2009, 05:54 AM
Paul Westphal

SFGiants4life
12-24-2009, 05:59 AM
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Good to see Scott Brooks get some recognition, he has done a great job with the Thunder. I also find it surprising that Mike Woodson hasn't received an extension yet.

Hell Yeah i graduated from the same High School as he did, Scott Brooks is the ****!!!

JayW_1023
12-24-2009, 06:47 AM
Tie between Westphal and Adelman. I'm loving this Rockets team. They are tough.

There is a reason why a tough team with role players like Houston has the number of a talented young streetballish team like Golden State. Good coaching and understanding the game of basketball.

So I'm leaning towards Adelman.

BradyIsTheMan12
12-24-2009, 07:20 AM
I would say Nate McMillian because Portland has overcame a ton of injuries and is still competitive but the fact that he has found ways to not play Jerryd Bayless for the majority of the season eliminates him for me right now. Maybe he is finally figuring out Bayless can play because he is ripping it up now.

Verbal Christ
12-24-2009, 01:07 PM
^^ yea the rockets havent had any injuries to deal with this year :rolleyes:

Chronz
12-24-2009, 01:43 PM
Rick Adelman hands down. 5th seed out west right now. Have beaten LA and Dallas on the road as well as Cle at Toyota Center. And done all of this with a bunch of role players.

Maybe you should stop defining them as role players. Hes done a terrific job but by the sounds of it, its almost as if you expected the Rockets to suck. These arent just role players, they are quality winners.

Ty Fast
12-24-2009, 01:47 PM
Rick Adelman

Chronz
12-24-2009, 01:52 PM
Rick Adelman seems to thrive when his best players go down. In the 2003-2004 season, the year Webber was recovering from knee surgery, the Kings still went 55-27 without their best player. The year before with Webber they went 59-23.
Adelman is on pace to lose less games this year, thats not thriving thats feeling the effects of losing an impact player. If they wouldnt have skipped a beat and kept on winning at a prolific rate, that would be thriving but its also unreasonable to expect. And thats what we should be looking for when measuring coaches, going above and beyond what was expected.

The Kings are kind of in the same boat, they lost what was becoming a cancerous Webber and added another All-Star, thats not a bad trade off I think.


Tie between Westphal and Adelman. I'm loving this Rockets team. They are tough.

There is a reason why a tough team with role players like Houston has the number of a talented young streetballish team like Golden State. Good coaching and understanding the game of basketball.

So I'm leaning towards Adelman.
If your not including the brain into the talent equation then whats the point of thinking it should correlate with winning? The Rockets have a better record than the Warriors because they have better players, and by my interpretation of the word, more talent.

The Kings are a better choice

Chronz
12-24-2009, 01:56 PM
^^ yea the rockets havent had any injuries to deal with this year :rolleyes:
True, but these guys havent gained anyone. The Rockets were atleast able to add some depth in positions they lost. These guys just lost their starting small-forward, starting center, backup SF/PF, backup C. With the only guy they got in the offseason for insurance was Juwan Howard.

EaglesJackson10
12-24-2009, 02:04 PM
Definatley Eddie Jordan or Vinny Del Negro lol.

tr3ymill3r
12-24-2009, 02:09 PM
Rick Adelman hands down. 5th seed out west right now. Have beaten LA and Dallas on the road as well as Cle at Toyota Center. And done all of this with a bunch of role players.

For sure, prior to the season starting everyone doubted Arizas ability to step up and be the guy, and he's had his struggles but that comes with the territory. Carl Landry is a beast and is coming into his own. Absolutely nobody picked the Rockets to do much of anything. If I remember correctly I recall writers for SI and ESPN picking the Rockets as finishing last or close to the bottom out West. In a division with Dallas and San Antonio they have exceeded my expectations up to this point. On a side not if anyone could make me a nice sig with the Rockets that would be much appreciated.

Chronz
12-24-2009, 02:22 PM
For sure, prior to the season starting everyone doubted Arizas ability to step up and be the guy, and he's had his struggles but that comes with the territory. Carl Landry is a beast and is coming into his own. Absolutely nobody picked the Rockets to do much of anything. If I remember correctly I recall writers for SI and ESPN picking the Rockets as finishing last or close to the bottom out West. In a division with Dallas and San Antonio they have exceeded my expectations up to this point. On a side not if anyone could make me a nice sig with the Rockets that would be much appreciated.

OK so even if they are overachieving did you expect his much from Sacramento? Im sure other teams are overachieving more than the Rox

Ansy
12-24-2009, 03:24 PM
Rick Adelman hands down. 5th seed out west right now. Have beaten LA and Dallas on the road as well as Cle at Toyota Center. And done all of this with a bunch of role players.

Agree completely. He's done a stellar job.

Raph12
12-24-2009, 03:30 PM
Adelman, Woodson, Westphal, SVG and PJ would round out my top 5.

Chronz
12-24-2009, 03:38 PM
Wow the more I think about it the better that Houston and Sacramento comparison is. Adelman is bringing Tmac back the way he shouldve with Webber, only Webber was HIS GUY. So he trusted him more than Tmac

JasonJohnHorn
12-24-2009, 04:42 PM
Its early in the year, but there are some contenders pulling out. Adleman is one of the best coahces in the last 25 years, its just a downer he's never won a title. He worked wonders with the Blazers, Kings and now the Rockets. The Rockets, with their roster, have no business playing anywhere near as well as they are. They've lost three all-stars and a HOFer since last year (McGrady, Yao, Artest and Mutumbo), and though McGrady is back, I'm not sure his impact counts toward their record so far. And they are playing in the toughest division in the league!

Woodson should be up there too, the question is can he hold it on all season? I think the Hawks have done well to stick by the guy during the bad years, I mean, seriously, the team was bad when he got in and there was no need to fire the guy because he took a contract with a team that had likely the worst roster in the league at the time. And the team has gotten better each year and this year they are coming into their own.

Gentry should get a nodd as well as most of you have pointed out, as should the perenial contenders such as; Phil Jackson, Greg Popovic and Jerry Sloan, and Stan VanGundy is doing a solid job with the Magic: he's been smart enough not to run a lot of plays through Howard and let the truly offensive players run the offence and still makes sure that Howard impact is felt every game.

DerekRE_3
12-24-2009, 05:04 PM
Adelman is on pace to lose less games this year, thats not thriving thats feeling the effects of losing an impact player. If they wouldnt have skipped a beat and kept on winning at a prolific rate, that would be thriving but its also unreasonable to expect. And thats what we should be looking for when measuring coaches, going above and beyond what was expected.

The Kings are kind of in the same boat, they lost what was becoming a cancerous Webber and added another All-Star, thats not a bad trade off I think.


If your not including the brain into the talent equation then whats the point of thinking it should correlate with winning? The Rockets have a better record than the Warriors because they have better players, and by my interpretation of the word, more talent.

The Kings are a better choice

Webber only became "cancerous" after he came back from his knee injury. And maybe thriving was too strong of a word, but he's getting more out of his players than pretty much every other coach, besides maybe Paul Westphal.

DerekRE_3
12-24-2009, 05:04 PM
Wow the more I think about it the better that Houston and Sacramento comparison is. Adelman is bringing Tmac back the way he shouldve with Webber, only Webber was HIS GUY. So he trusted him more than Tmac

Well the Kings showcased Webber for a trade, and did a better job of it than the Rockets are so far with T-Mac, or maybe Webber just had more left, time will tell.

asandhu23
12-24-2009, 05:09 PM
Don Nelson hands down :cool:

Chronz
12-24-2009, 05:35 PM
Well the Kings showcased Webber for a trade, and did a better job of it than the Rockets are so far with T-Mac, or maybe Webber just had more left, time will tell.

You cant showcase players for trades after the trade deadline, Im talking about when Webber came back to a team that was contending without him. He doesnt want to make that mistake with Tmac, the showcase was BS. How do you showcase any player in 7 minute increments? Nobody cares what a player does in spurt minutes.

DerekRE_3
12-24-2009, 05:37 PM
You cant showcase players for trades after the trade deadline, Im talking about when Webber came back to a team that was contending without him. He doesnt want to make that mistake with Tmac, the showcase was BS. How do you showcase any player in 7 minute increments? Nobody cares what a player does in spurt minutes.

Ah well that was Adelman's fault as much as Webber's. That whole situation just wasn't handled properly.

Chronz
12-24-2009, 05:48 PM
Webber only became "cancerous" after he came back from his knee injury. And maybe thriving was too strong of a word, but he's getting more out of his players than pretty much every other coach, besides maybe Paul Westphal.
I know your stat savvy so Im going to express my thoughts with a few of them.

We had this conversation in a recent thread remember, Webber was somewhat cancerous that entire year. You blamed it on his knees giving him problems all year before finally giving out in the playoffs IIRC.

Webbers offensive rating was below 100 the year he played 67 games, so really the team was winning so many games inspite of him, relative to how well he was the year prior. Like losing that version of Webber (20.9PER) and replacing him with Brad Miller (19.4PER/118Offensive RTG) along with the growth of the core, you would expect that team to keep winning. The loss of a player whos so below league average in efficiency isnt so hard to replace especially when your getting another All-Star to do it, as for the Rockets Ron Artest offensive/defensive responsibilities arent THAT hard to replace. Losing Yao was the real problem but thats why the team has fallen off as much as it has. His defensive value alone makes them contenders.

Like if Webber of the year prior when he was healthy had been around for the 03 campaign (with Bibby and the core getting better) they wouldve dominated. Instead what they had was another late version of Ewing, a guy whos per game averages exceeded his actual value and importance to the team. That Laker series was really the end of Webbers career as a superstar. The year after that he had an ok All-Star year, but it was clearly one of those situations where his team elevated his national profile more than his performance. Which is fine because its the usual flow of aplayers career, he proves his worth carrying a team early, then as he fades and the team gets better players around him they dont need him to carry the entire load. And to Webbers credit he did play every game to win, its not as profound as Ewing when he just wouldnt surrender some of the offensive responsibility.

DerekRE_3
12-24-2009, 05:53 PM
I know your stat savvy so Im going to express my thoughts with a few of them.

We had this conversation in a recent thread remember, Webber was somewhat cancerous that entire year. You blamed it on his knees giving him problems all year before finally giving out in the playoffs IIRC.

Webbers offensive rating was below 100 the year he played 67 games, so really the team was winning so many games inspite of him, relative to how well he was the year prior. Like losing that version of Webber (20.9PER) and replacing him with Brad Miller (19.4PER/118Offensive RTG) along with the growth of the core, you would expect that team to keep winning. The loss of a player whos so below league average in efficiency isnt so hard to replace especially when your getting another All-Star to do it, as for the Rockets Ron Artest offensive/defensive responsibilities arent THAT hard to replace. Losing Yao was the real problem but thats why the team has fallen off as much as it has. His defensive value alone makes them contenders.

Like if Webber of the year prior when he was healthy had been around for the 03 campaign (with Bibby and the core getting better) they wouldve dominated. Instead what they had was another late version of Ewing, a guy whos per game averages exceeded his actual value and importance to the team.

Yeah I agree with you. Basically it's just a shame that Webber got hurt, especially with the timing of it all. If we had one more year of prime Webber, we'd have a championship. Webber just had trouble transitioning from being "the guy" to a complimentary piece. You see it happen all the time. I still think Adelman did a great job integrating Brad Miller into the offense and having him play PF, which is a position he had never played before. I just think Rick Adelman is a very underrated coach, who has a knack for getting the most out of his players and putting them in a position to succeed. Also credit Geoff Petrie for trading for Miller, who was a great fit in the offense.