Is there any professional sports league that is so incredibly Championship driven than the NBA right now? Minnesota Timberwolves head coach Chris Finch is aware of that fact, or at least should be, as the NBA ownership and GMs have turned the coaching carousel into a topsy-turvy battle for supremacy among the best NBA teams.
Let’s go down the list of NBA head coaches fired so far during the 2022-23 NBA season:
- NBA Team Head Coach Link Record Mid-season?
- Phoenix Suns Monty Williams Link 47-34 No
- Milwaukee Bucks Mike Budenholzer Link 58-24 No
- Philadelphia 76ers Doc Rivers Link 54-28 No
- Toronto Raptors Nick Nurse Link 41-41 No
- Brooklyn Nets Steve Nash Link 45-37 Yes
That’s pretty shocking, isn’t it? Despite overwhelming success during the regular season, the jobs of NBA head coaches appear to be at even greater risk if they do not deliver an NBA Championship. It’s fool’s gold to win in the regular season. What do I mean?
Winning isn’t everything. Winning NBA Championships is everything
No team listed above had a losing record. While the Brooklyn Nets (fired HC Steve Nash just seven games into the 2022-23 NBA season) started with a record of just 2-5, there was no doubt that they were on track to turn things around no matter who was at the helm.
So for the teams who fired their coach, they had amassed a combined record of 202 wins and 132 losses. On average, that works out to 50 wins and 32 losses. That’s spectacular, but it’s just the regular season, right? That’s why so many head coaches try to game the system by giving their key contributors night’s off to protect them from those soft tissue injuries that occur from muscle fatigue.
Still, some win and some don’t. That’s how any Championship tournament goes. The teams that fail to win one year simply go back to their drawing board and start over. Well, unless you compete in the NBA, that is.