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View Full Version : Is Spoelstra the worst championship coach ever?



Riodagoat
03-26-2014, 11:06 PM
Just wondering what your opinions are on this one. To be clear, my argument is about being a CHAMPIONSHIP coach, so coaches who have never won a ring don't count. I think he's a mediocre coach at best. I would put him in the same category as a George Karl or a Nate McMillan.

Poor in game adjustments, terrible off-a-timeout play calls, and terrible pep-talks (listening to his speeches during huddles make me cringe)

If this guy didn't have a job right now, I'm no quite sure you would hear teams going crazy about hiring this guy.

What do you guys think?

Hawkeye15
03-26-2014, 11:09 PM
hmm, would need to think about that. I mean, by no means is he a top 5 coach, and yet he is back to back champion in his profession.

Remember too, he is 40, maybe? He will eventually be looked at as an excellent coach, but yeah, this is a good question, though I think I can come up with worse. The list may be short though...

Slug3
03-26-2014, 11:38 PM
hmm, would need to think about that. I mean, by no means is he a top 5 coach, and yet he is back to back champion in his profession.

Remember too, he is 40, maybe? He will eventually be looked at as an excellent coach, but yeah, this is a good question, though I think I can come up with worse. The list may be short though...

I look at him as a great defensive minded coach who at the moment has a team that wants to coast and not play great D. But when it comes to offense or in game adjustments or drawing up plays, you are better off asking a monkey.

beyourself
03-26-2014, 11:41 PM
He's a defensive coach with trash big men. I don't consider Bosh a big man. So think about that.

king4day
03-26-2014, 11:46 PM
I remember hearing the Bobcats were going to look at hiring him had Miami fired him a few years ago. He isn't elite but he did keep a talent depleted Miami team in playoff contention for a couple years before LeBron.
He'd absolutely have a job next year and it would be a Head Coach position, if he were fired after this season (hypothetically).

beyourself
03-26-2014, 11:49 PM
I feel like this is a loaded question. Generally coaches that win titles are quality coaches. There has probably been some that were carried by their roster totally, but I'd say most championship teams have good coaches.

Also we haven't seen or remembered every championship coach so you are limiting it to recent times. And in recent times Jackson and Popovich have hogged a lot of the titles.

still1ballin
03-27-2014, 12:00 AM
I think he made great adjustments espicially of getting rid of oden and putting Haslem on hibbert.

Fnom11
03-27-2014, 12:02 AM
He's a solid coach that makes questionable decisions, has a hard time with rotations, can't draw up a play to save his life. I don't think i'd take too many coaches over him though.

TheMightyHumph
03-27-2014, 12:22 AM
Rudy Tomjanovich

Asik's better
03-27-2014, 12:43 AM
Rudy Tomjanovich

Rudy isn't the worst. You must be a lakers fan.

Kashmir13579
03-27-2014, 03:56 AM
I like him.

D-Leethal
03-27-2014, 09:19 AM
I think he is a damn good coach.

Goose17
03-27-2014, 09:32 AM
I can't think of a championship coach that wasn't better than Spoelstra, but there has been like what? 30 coaches that have won a ring?

It doesn't make him a bad coach, it's the equivalent of being the 30th best player in the league all time. (so what? Thurmond? Ewing? Drexler? Maravich? Garnett? Frazier? someone along those lines).

Daze9900
03-27-2014, 09:47 AM
He's definitely got so much better as a head coach. I wouldn't call him terrible out of time-outs how many times have we seen LeBron or Wade dunks from inbounds. He's decent with the clipboard. As others have posted he's a defensive coach with no real paint enforcers. I think one of his best traits is his ability to motivate. Even guys like Wade and Lebron get bored or can lose their focus and I feel like he keeps his team ready to play for the most part and defensively they are well prepared before each game. I think this post is a typical over reaction that most fans have when their team loses a big game. I think his biggest room for improvement is end of game situations. They need to have go to sets for each of their players. Lebron doesn't know what to do at the end of a game to win it does he drive it? Does his drive and kick? does he just do his little new go to move a step back 35 foot fade away? What does Wade do? Even when they won the chip it was desperation 3's first made by LeBron then missed and tipped out to an opportunistic Ray Allen to force the overtime.

Mr. Baller
03-27-2014, 09:50 AM
The fact that people think he can't draw up plays don't watch. He has been drawing up great plays out of timeouts consistently. He is an excellent coach imo, top 10 in league right now and he is also in his 40's. Rotations need work, but other then that he is very good

sturm
03-27-2014, 10:05 AM
I think he is very hard working strong minded young coach. But he has weaknesses. To define offensive game plan, to motivate players etc.

Ezio
03-27-2014, 10:09 AM
His in game sounds make him sound stupid imo, but he makes the right adjustments when the time comes. He's at least better than Brooks.

RiLoc
03-27-2014, 10:34 AM
Worst championship coach in history? Seems a little over the top. In recent history, I'd take Spoelstra over next town Larry Brown. Historically, Spoelstra has to be better than the career sub-.500 coaches Bill Fitch, Paul Westhead, Dick Motta, Buddy Jeannette and Buddy Jeannette. There are some close to .500 coaches in the 70s and 80s I think he's arguably better than too.

I think Spoelstra is a good coach. The Heat are talented, but have limitations: no true centers, aging team, big egos... I think he's addressed those well. I think LeBron's transformation has been a good one as well. Bosh too, although some people might argue.

That being said, evaluating Spoelstra against other recent championship coaches seems difficult... Certainly there aren't a lot of useful statistics about coaches. The only one I could think of that's updated regularly is RAPM (short for Regularized Adjusted Plus-Minus):


Off Def Off+Def
Erik Spoelstra -0.5 0.0 -0.5
Rick Carlisle 0.0 -0.3 -0.3
Phil Jackson 2.6 1.4 4.0
Doc Rivers 0.3 1.9 2.3
Gregg Popovich 0.8 2.2 3.0
Pat Riley -1.1 2.2 1.2
Larry Brown -1.4 1.2 -0.2
Rudy Tomjanovich 1.6 0.2 1.8

Source: stats-for-the-nba.appspot.com (http://stats-for-the-nba.appspot.com/)
Explanations of RAPM: Shut Up And Jam (http://shutupandjam.net/nba-ncaa-stats/2012-13-regularized-adjusted-plus-minus/), You Have No Game (http://youhavenogame.wordpress.com/2013/04/01/197/), NBA Stuffer (http://www.nbastuffer.com/component/option,com_glossary/Itemid,90/catid,42/func,view/term,Regularized%20Adjusted%20Plus%20Minus%20(RAPM )/)

I guess by that measurement he is the worst recent coach. I think that stat is underrating Carlisle. I'd still take Spoelstra over Larry Brown.


and terrible pep-talks (listening to his speeches during huddles make me cringe)To be fair, those are heavily edited.

Heatcheck
03-27-2014, 11:16 AM
The fact that people think he can't draw up plays don't watch. He has been drawing up great plays out of timeouts consistently. He is an excellent coach imo, top 10 in league right now and he is also in his 40's. Rotations need work, but other then that he is very good

that's about it. hes a bit of a robot with his rotations and he looks like a limo driver.

RaiderLakersA's
03-27-2014, 11:59 AM
I'll just say that there are better coaches that have never won a title as a coach.

Hawkeye15
03-27-2014, 03:49 PM
I'll just say that there are better coaches that have never won a title as a coach.

oh for sure, but the same can be said of many great players. There are players ranked in the top 20-30 who don't have a ring at all.

NoahH
03-27-2014, 04:44 PM
Spoelstra is a very good coach. Is he elite like Doc Rivers or Pop level? No. Is he top 5 in the league? Yes.

Its a tough questions because championship coaches are very good and he has very tough competition.

Spoelstra is arguably better than Paul Westhead no? and Bill Russell as a player-coach? lol

JasonJohnHorn
03-27-2014, 05:10 PM
Paul Westhead.
Rudy T
K.C. Jones
Billy Cunningham


These guys didn't have much of a career outside of the teams they won with, though each was a good coach in their own right.

These are guys who were relatively young and all coached less than 10 seasons.

I think Spo is a decent coach. He's doing a lot with a team that can't rebound. His GM (Pat Riley) really should have been chasing after a C that could play, like Dalembert or Kaman, isntead of Oden). What is Spo supposed to do when Riley just keeps signign SFs all offseason? Of... we got LBJ and Battier... how about we add Beasely and Lewis? GREAT!! 4 SFs? Thanks Pat! I don't know if you noticed this, but WE NEED A CENTER!!!!


He's got the squad playing solid team defense and scoring efficiently enough to cmpensate for their lack of rebounding. What more can he do. It is a miracle they beat Indy and SAS last year looking at what they got in the front court. A lot of that is the players, but some of that is the coaching.

J_M_B
03-27-2014, 08:09 PM
I feel most fans don't realize how great of a basketball mind this guy really is and he's still relatively young.

He's improved tremendously over the last two seasons drawing up plays coming out of a timeout. The guy also seems to get no credit for adopting the small ball lineups that led to back to back titles. The players play hard for him too. Highly respected by the big 3. I get that he comes across sometimes as corny with some of his motivational speeches, but he kept this team focused through all the scrutiny they got a few years ago. Not every coach can do that.

NBA_Starter
03-27-2014, 08:52 PM
His rotations are very questionable.

slashsnake
03-28-2014, 10:58 AM
I think he's improved a lot. I thought the Mavs won that finals based on better coaching, but some of his moves and rotations in the playoffs since have been extremely good. Too early to say though. It will be interesting to see how he progresses with a team without the current roster in Miami.

MonroeFAN
03-28-2014, 12:06 PM
I don't see how Doc Rivers is any better. He might have a more recognizable name.

todu82
03-28-2014, 12:34 PM
I like him as well. Guy has done a pretty good job coaching all that talent.

bagwell368
03-28-2014, 02:04 PM
At first I thought he was Charlie McCarthy's dummy on Riley's lap, but, he seems to be growing.

TheMightyHumph
03-28-2014, 04:46 PM
Rudy isn't the worst. You must be a lakers fan.

He's the worst to me. And I'm no Laker fan

sunsfan88
03-28-2014, 05:36 PM
Popovich.

Jk.

TheLebronFamily
03-28-2014, 05:41 PM
Spo is a great coach you jack off

NBA_Starter
03-28-2014, 10:06 PM
Maybe regular season

krazylegz
03-28-2014, 10:14 PM
who is spoelstra?

DreamShaker
03-28-2014, 11:21 PM
At first I thought he was Charlie McCarthy's dummy on Riley's lap, but, he seems to be growing.

My Grandparents had that freakin doll in their house and my brothers would lock me in the room with it to freak me out. Lol.

But yeah, I had the same line of thinking and he has done well enough not to screw up the super team.