More coaching vacancies were filled this week, with Nate Bjorkgren and Stan Van Gundy becoming the sixth and seventh head coaches hired since July. The Pacers believe Bjorkgren can deliver the modern offense they were looking for when they decided to replace Nate McMillan, while the Pelicans were impressed by Van Gundy’s leadership skills and his track record at his previous stops in Miami, Orlando and Detroit.
Earlier in the week, the Clippers officially promoted Tyronn Lue to head coach to take over for Doc Rivers. Lue inherits one of the most talented rosters in the league and already has a familiarity with his players after serving as lead assistant under Rivers for the past year.
This year’s coaching moves started in late July when the Knicks reached an agreement to bring Tom Thibodeau to New York. Thibodeau was rumored to be in contention for jobs with several teams that were part of the NBA’s restart, so the Knicks took advantage of their opportunity as one of the league’s eight inactive clubs.
Steve Nash was the most surprising move of the offseason as the Nets hired the two-time MVP as their head coach without any previous experience. Nash beat out interim coach Jacque Vaughn, along with an impressive field of rumored candidates that included Lue, Lakers assistant Jason Kidd, ABC/ESPN broadcasters Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson and Sixers assistant Ime Udoka.
Two other head coaches were hired shortly after being dismissed by other teams. The Sixers jumped at the chance to add Rivers, reaching an agreement three days after he was fired by the Clippers. Likewise, the Bulls pounced on Billy Donovan after the Thunder let him go.
Houston and Oklahoma City still have vacancies to fill, but we want to get your feedback on the coaching changes so far. Which teams made the best and worst decisions in choosing their head coaches? Please leave your answers in the comment section.