As we outlined in detail earlier today, four NBA teams made head coaching changes this offseason. Those changes were as follows:
- Charlotte Hornets: Hired Steve Clifford to replace James Borrego.
- Los Angeles Lakers: Hired Darvin Ham to replace Frank Vogel.
- Sacramento Kings: Hired Mike Brown to replace Alvin Gentry.
- Utah Jazz: Hired Will Hardy to replace Quin Snyder.
The Hornets and Kings, two young teams looking to get back to the playoffs, took somewhat similar approaches in their hiring processes, landing on candidates who have plenty of previous head coaching experience and who have led lottery teams to the postseason in the past.
Between them, Clifford and Brown have coached 1,200 NBA regular season games. And despite having underwhelming rosters in Charlotte and Orlando, Clifford has led his teams to the playoffs in four of eight seasons. Brown’s clubs made the postseason in six of his seven full seasons as a head coach.
The Lakers and Jazz, meanwhile, took a different path, hiring veteran assistants who are becoming head coaches for the first time.
It’s an interesting choice for the Lakers, given that they have a veteran roster and title aspirations, but they believe Ham – a former player himself – can command the respect of stars like LeBron James and Anthony Davis and won’t back down from making tough, necessary rotation decisions.
As for the Jazz, their new head coach – who is known for his player development skills – will be the league’s youngest. Hardy’s hiring was perhaps the first obvious signal that the team would be charting a new course this summer. After trading away standout center Rudy Gobert, Utah is either headed for a full-fledged rebuild or intends to reshape its roster around young star Donovan Mitchell. Taking the former route would make some sense based on Hardy’s skill set and the fact that he received a five-year contract.
Based on what you know about these four teams and their new coaches, we want to know which of this offseason’s head coaching hires you liked the best. Obviously, the expectations won’t be the same for all four coaches, so we’re taking potential long-term success and tenure into account, rather than just projecting which team will have the best record in 2022/23.
Which of these four coaches will be the most successful in his new job? Vote in our poll, then head to the comment section below to share your thoughts!