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Chuck Daly

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Chuck Daly
Daly in 2006
Personal information
Born(1930-07-20)July 20, 1930
Kane, Pennsylvania, U.S.
DiedMay 9, 2009(2009-05-09) (aged 78)
Jupiter, Florida, U.S.
Listed height6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Listed weight180 lb (82 kg)
Career information
High schoolKane (Kane, Pennsylvania)
CollegeBloomsburg (1950–1952)
Coaching career1955–1999
Career history
As coach:
1955–1963Punxsutawney HS
1963–1969Duke (assistant)
1969–1971Boston College
19781981Philadelphia 76ers (assistant)
1981–1982Cleveland Cavaliers
19831992Detroit Pistons
19921994New Jersey Nets
19971999Orlando Magic
Career highlights and awards
As head coach:

As assistant coach:

  • NCAA final Four Appearances (1963, 1964, 1966)
  • ACC Tournament champion (1963, 1964, 1966)
  • ACC Regular Season champion (1963–1966)
Career coaching record
NBA638–437 (.593)
College151–62 (.709)
Basketball Hall of Fame as coach
FIBA Hall of Fame as coach
College Basketball Hall of Fame
Inducted in 2006
Head Coach for  United States
Olympic Games
Gold medal – first place 1992 Barcelona Head coach

Charles Jerome Daly (July 20, 1930 – May 9, 2009) was an American basketball head coach. He led the Detroit Pistons to two consecutive National Basketball Association (NBA) championships in 1989 and 1990—during the team's "Bad Boys" era—and the 1992 United States men's Olympic basketball team ("The Dream Team") to the gold medal at the 1992 Summer Olympics.[1]

Daly is a two-time Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame inductee, being inducted in 1994 for his individual coaching career,[2] and in 2010 was posthumously inducted as the head coach of the "Dream Team".[3] The Chuck Daly Lifetime Achievement Award is named after him.[4]

Early life[edit]

Born in Kane, Pennsylvania, to Earl and Geraldine Daly on July 20, 1930, Daly attended Kane Area High School.[5] He matriculated at St. Bonaventure University for one year before transferring to Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania, where he graduated in 1952.[6] After serving two years in the military, he began his basketball coaching career in 1955 at Punxsutawney Area High School in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania.[1]

College career[edit]

After compiling a 111–70 record in eight seasons[6] at Punxsutawney High School, Daly moved on to the college level in 1963 as an assistant coach under Vic Bubas at Duke University. During his six seasons at Duke, the Blue Devils won the Atlantic Coast Conference championship and advanced to the Final Four, both in 1964 and 1966.[7] Daly then replaced Bob Cousy as head coach at Boston College in 1969. The Eagles recorded an 11–13 record in Daly's first year at the school, and improved to 15–11 in 1971.[8]

Daly became the head coach at the University of Pennsylvania in 1971, succeeding Dick Harter. Penn won 20 or more games and captured the Ivy League title in each of its first four seasons with Daly at the helm.[9] The most successful campaign was his first in 1972, when the Quakers recorded a 25–3 record overall (13–1 in their conference), and advanced to the NCAA East Regional Final, eventually losing to North Carolina.[10] An additional significant success for Daly was in 1979, when all five starters on Pennsylvania's Final Four team had initially been recruited by Daly.[9] His overall record after six seasons at Penn was 125–38 (74–10 within the Ivy League).

NBA and national team career[edit]

In 1978, Daly joined the NBA's Philadelphia 76ers as an assistant coach. During the 1981 season, the Cleveland Cavaliers hired him as the third head coach that season, but he was fired with a 9–32 record before the season ended.[11] He then returned to the 76ers as a broadcaster until he was hired in 1983 by the Detroit Pistons. The Pistons, a franchise that had not recorded back-to-back winning seasons since the mid-1950s, made the NBA playoffs each year Daly was head coach (1983–1992), and reached the NBA finals three times, winning two consecutive NBA championships in 1989 and 1990. While serving as the Pistons coach, Daly was also a color commentator for TBS's NBA Playoff coverage.

Daly was named head coach of the U.S. Dream Team that won the gold medal at the 1992 Olympics,[3] before moving his NBA career onto the New Jersey Nets for the 1992–93 season. Daly stayed with the Nets for two seasons, before resigning over frustration over the immaturity of some of the players on his team.[12]

Daly again took up a role as color commentator for TNT's NBA coverage during the mid-1990s. Daly rejected an offer to coach the New York Knicks over the summer of 1995 after deciding he was not ready for the NBA coaching grind.[13] He would return to coaching with the Orlando Magic at the beginning of the 1997–98 season. Daly stayed two seasons with the Magic and then retired permanently.


Daly was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in March 2009 and died on May 9, 2009, at the age of 78.[1] He is buried at Riverside Memorial Park in Tequesta, Florida.

Head coaching record[edit]


Statistics overview
Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Boston College Eagles (NCAA University Division independent) (1969–1971)
1969–70 Boston College 11–13
1970–71 Boston College 15–11
Boston College: 26–24
Penn Quakers (Ivy League) (1971–1977)
1971–72 Penn 25–3 13–1 1st NCAA University Division Third Round
1972–73 Penn 21–7 12–2 1st NCAA University Division Third Round
1973–74 Penn 21–6 13–1 1st NCAA Division I First Round
1974–75 Penn 23–5 13–1 1st NCAA Division I First Round
1975–76 Penn 17–9 11–3 2nd
1976–77 Penn 18–8 12–2 2nd
Penn: 125–38 74–10
Total: 151–62

      National champion         Postseason invitational champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion


Regular season G Games coached W Games won L Games lost W–L % Win–loss %
Playoffs PG Playoff games PW Playoff wins PL Playoff losses PW–L % Playoff win–loss %
Team Year G W L W–L% Finish PG PW PL PW–L% Result
Cleveland 1981–82 41 9 32 .220 (fired)
Detroit 1983–84 82 49 33 .598 2nd in Central 5 2 3 .400 Lost in first round
Detroit 1984–85 82 46 36 .561 2nd in Central 9 5 4 .556 Lost in Conference semifinals
Detroit 1985–86 82 46 36 .561 3rd in Central 4 1 3 .250 Lost in first round
Detroit 1986–87 82 52 30 .634 2nd in Central 15 10 5 .667 Lost in Conference finals
Detroit 1987–88 82 54 28 .659 1st in Central 23 14 9 .609 Lost in NBA Finals
Detroit 1988–89 82 63 19 .768 1st in Central 17 15 2 .882 Won NBA Championship
Detroit 1989–90 82 59 23 .720 1st in Central 20 15 5 .750 Won NBA Championship
Detroit 1990–91 82 50 32 .610 2nd in Central 15 7 8 .467 Lost in Conference finals
Detroit 1991–92 82 48 34 .585 3rd in Central 5 2 3 .400 Lost in first round
New Jersey 1992–93 82 43 39 .524 3rd in Atlantic 5 2 3 .400 Lost in first round
New Jersey 1993–94 82 45 37 .549 3rd in Atlantic 4 1 3 .250 Lost in first round
Orlando 1997–98 82 41 41 .500 5th in Atlantic Missed playoffs
Orlando 1998–99 50 33 17 .660 1st in Atlantic 4 1 3 .250 Lost in first round
Career 1,075 638 437 .593 126 75 51 .595

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "Chuck Daly, Pistons Coach, Dies at 78". The New York Times. May 9, 2009. Retrieved 2015-09-15. Daly played basketball at St. Bonaventure and at Bloomsburg (Pa.) State College ...
  2. ^ "The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame - Hall of Famers". Archived from the original on 2009-08-31. Retrieved 2009-08-17.
  3. ^ a b "The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame - Hall of Famers". Archived from the original on 2010-08-18. Retrieved 2015-03-11.
  4. ^ "Pat Riley Receives Chuck Daly Lifetime Achievement Award". Interlink Magazines, LLC. 19 June 2012. Retrieved June 22, 2013.
  5. ^ Juliano, Joe (May 10, 2009). "Hall of Famer Daly dies of cancer at 78". Sports. Philadelphia Inquirer. pp. E1, E2. Retrieved October 16, 2022 – via Newspapers.com. Born Charles Jerome Daly on July 20, 1930, in St. Mary's, Pa., he graduated from Kane Area High School...
  6. ^ a b Official NBA Register. 2003–04 Edition. St. Louis, MO: The Sporting News, 2003.
  7. ^ "Former Duke Assistant/NBA Coaching Legend Chuck Daly Passes Away". goduke.com. 9 May 2009.
  8. ^ Boston College 2008–09 Men's Basketball Media Guide. Archived 2011-08-07 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ a b University of Pennsylvania 2008–09 Men's Basketball Media Guide. Archived 2011-07-19 at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ "Chuck Daly Passes Away at Age 78," University of Pennsylvania Athletics, Saturday, May 9, 2009. Archived July 19, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  11. ^ Sportmeisters, The. "Remembering Chuck Daly". Bleacher Report.
  12. ^ Kerber, Fred (5 July 2014). "Nets' coaching exits have not been pretty".
  13. ^ BEST, NEIL (25 June 1995). "Knicks Moving to Plan B : Pro basketball: Daly scuttles hopes of getting the coach they wanted, but Nelson likely waiting in the wings" – via LA Times.

External links[edit]