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Guest Wikipedia

Top 10 Coaches in NBA History

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Alongside the selection of the 50 greatest players, was the selection of the Top 10 Coaches in NBA History. The list was compiled based upon unranked selection undertaken exclusively by members of the print and broadcast media who regularly cover the NBA. All 10 coaches named were alive at the time of the list's announcement, and four of them—Phil Jackson, Don Nelson, Pat Riley, and Lenny Wilkens—were then active. Five have since died: Red Holzman in 1998, Red Auerbach in 2006, Chuck Daly in 2009, Jack Ramsay in 2014, and John Kundla in 2017. Jackson was the last of the ten to coach in the NBA; he announced his retirement after the 2010–11 season. Nelson was the only member to have never won a championship as a coach, even though he won five as a player. Wilkens was the only member of the coaches list to have been selected as a member of the players list. All ten coaches are also members of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.


* Elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame
Year Denotes year of Basketball Hall of Fame induction
Coach Team(s) coached (years) Coaching record Championships won as coach Coach of the Yearaward(s) won Year Ref.
Red Auerbach* Washington Capitols (19461949)
Tri-Cities Blackhawks (1949–1950)
Boston Celtics (19501966)
938–479 (.662) (19571959196019611962196319641965,1966) (1965) 1969  
Chuck Daly* Cleveland Cavaliers (1982)
Detroit Pistons (19831992)
New Jersey Nets (19921994)
Orlando Magic (19971999)
564–379 (.598)
638–437 (.593)
(19891990) None 1994  
Bill Fitch* Cleveland Cavaliers (19701979)
Boston Celtics (19791983)
Houston Rockets (19831988)
New Jersey Nets (19891992)
Los Angeles Clippers (19941998)
944–1106 (.460) (1981) (19761980) 2019  
Red Holzman* Milwaukee / St. Louis Hawks(19541956)
New York Knicks (19671982)
696–604 (.535) (19701973) (1970) 1986  
Phil Jackson* Chicago Bulls (19891998)
Los Angeles Lakers (19992004,20052011)
414–160 (.721)
1155–485 (.704)
11 (19911992199319961997199820002001,200220092010) (1996) 2007  
John Kundla* Minneapolis Lakers (19481959) 423–302 (.583) (19491950195219531954) None 1995  
Don Nelson* Milwaukee Bucks (19761987)
Golden State Warriors (1988199520062010)
New York Knicks (1995–1996)
Dallas Mavericks (19972005)
851–629 (.575)
1335–1063 (.557)
None (198319851992) 2012  
Jack Ramsay* Philadelphia 76ers (19681972)
Buffalo Braves (19721976)
Portland Trail Blazers (19761986)
Indiana Pacers (19861988)
864–783 (.525) (1977) None 1992  
Pat Riley* Los Angeles Lakers (19811990)
New York Knicks (19911995)
Miami Heat (1995200320052008)
798–339 (.702)
1210–694 (.636)
(19821985198719882006) (199019931997) 2008  
Lenny Wilkens* Seattle SuperSonics (19691972,19771985)
Portland Trail Blazers (19741976)
Cleveland Cavaliers (19861993)
Atlanta Hawks (19932000)
Toronto Raptors (20002003)
New York Knicks (20042005)
1014–850 (.544)
1332–1155 (.536)
(1979) (1994) 1998  


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