List of NBA championship head coaches

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The National Basketball Association (NBA) is a major professional basketball league in North America. It was founded in 1946 as the Basketball Association of America (BAA).[1] The league adopted its current name at the start of the 1949–50 season when it merged with the National Basketball League (NBL).[2] The league consists of 30 teams, of which 29 are located in the United States and one in Canada. In the NBA, a head coach is the highest ranking coach of a coaching staff. They typically hold a more public profile and are paid more than the assistant coaches.

Former Los Angeles Lakers head coach Phil Jackson won eleven NBA championships, the most in NBA history. He won six titles with the Chicago Bulls and five titles with the Lakers, and is the only coach who has won multiple championships with more than one team. Red Auerbach won nine championships with the Boston Celtics and won 8 consecutive titles from 1959 to 1966. John Kundla, Pat Riley, and current San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich have each won five championships. Kundla won all of his titles with the Lakers, and Popovich has won all of his titles with the Spurs, while Riley won four titles with the Lakers and one with the Miami Heat. Current Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra has won two titles with the Heat. Los Angeles Clippers head coach Doc Rivers, Dallas Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle, Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr, and Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Tyronn Lue are the only other active coaches who have won a championship, Rivers having won while with the Boston Celtics in 2008.

Among championship head coaches, thirteen of them (Auerbach, Larry Brown, Carlisle, Bill Fitch, Tom Heinsohn, Red Holzman, Jackson, Dick Motta, Popovich, Riley, Rivers, Bill Sharman, Lenny Wilkens) have all won Coach of the Year Award and 11 of them (Auerbach, Brown, Chuck Daly, Alex Hannum, Holzman, Jackson, Kundla, Jack Ramsay, Riley, Sharman, Wilkens) have been inducted to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as a coach.[3] Several more have been enshrined as players or contributors. Fourteen of the head coaches also won championships as players, with both Buddy Jeannette and Bill Russell having won their only manager titles as player-coach. Two of them, Riley and Lue, are along with Paul Westhead the only three coaches who led teams to titles having only arrived in mid-season.[4][5]

Key[edit]

Yrs Number of years coached
GC Games coached
W Wins
L Losses
Win% Winning percentage
^ Denotes coach who is currently coaching an NBA team
* Elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as a coach
*^ Active NBA coach who has been elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame

List[edit]

Note: Statistics are correct through the end of the 2015–16 season.

Number won Coach Team(s) won with (years)[a] Coaching career[b] Yrs GC W L Win% GC W L Win% Ref.
Regular season Playoffs
11 Jackson, PhilPhil Jackson* Chicago Bulls (1991, 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 1998)
Los Angeles Lakers (2000, 2001, 2002, 2009, 2010)
19891998, 19992004, 20052011 20 1,640 1,155 485 .704 333 229 104 .688 [6]
9 Auerbach, RedRed Auerbach* Boston Celtics (1957, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966) 19461966 20 1,417 938 479 .662 168 99 69 .589 [7]
5 Kundla, JohnJohn Kundla* Minneapolis Lakers (1949, 1950, 1952, 1953, 1954) 19481958, 1958–1959 11 725 423 302 .583 95 60 35 .632 [8]
5 Riley, PatPat Riley* Los Angeles Lakers (1982, 1985, 1987, 1988)
Miami Heat (2006)
19812003, 20052008 24 1,904 1,210 694 .636 282 171 111 .606 [9]
5 Popovich, GreggGregg Popovich^ San Antonio Spurs (1999, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2014) 1996–present 20 1,574 1,089 485 .692 256 158 98 .617 [10]
2 Daly, ChuckChuck Daly* Detroit Pistons (1989, 1990) 19811994, 19971999 14 1,075 638 437 .593 126 75 51 .595 [11]
2 Hannum, AlexAlex Hannum* St. Louis Hawks (1958)
Philadelphia 76ers (1967)
19561958, 19601968, 19691971 12 883 471 412 .533 81 47 34 .580 [12]
2 Heinsohn, TomTom Heinsohn* Boston Celtics (1974, 1976) 19691978 9 690 427 263 .619 80 47 33 .588 [13]
2 Holzman, RedRed Holzman* New York Knicks (1970, 1973) 19541957, 19671977, 19781982 18 1,300 696 604 .535 106 58 48 .547 [14]
2 Jones, K. C.K. C. Jones Boston Celtics (1984, 1986) 19741976, 19831988, 19901992 10 774 522 252 .674 138 81 57 .587 [15]
2 Russell, BillBill Russell Boston Celtics (1968, 1969) 19661969, 19731977, 1987–1988 8 631 341 290 .540 61 34 27 .557 [16]
2 Tomjanovich, RudyRudy Tomjanovich Houston Rockets (1994, 1995) 19922003, 2004–2005 13 943 527 416 .559 90 51 39 .567 [17]
2 Spoelstra, ErikErik Spoelstra^ Miami Heat (2012, 2013) 2008–present 8 640 399 241 .623 113 70 43 .619 [18]
1 Attles, AlAl Attles Golden State Warriors (1975) 19701982 14 1,075 557 518 .518 61 31 30 .508 [19]
1 Brown, LarryLarry Brown* Detroit Pistons (2004) 19761979, 19811983, 19882006, 20082010 27 2,002 1,098 904 .548 193 100 93 .518 [20]
1 Carlisle, RickRick Carlisle^ Dallas Mavericks (2011) 20012007, 2008–present 14 1,132 661 471 .584 120 58 62 .483 [21]
1 Cervi, AlAl Cervi Syracuse Nationals (1955) 19491956, 1958–1959 9 567 326 241 .575 60 34 26 .567 [22]
1 Costello, LarryLarry Costello Milwaukee Bucks (1971) 19681976, 1978–1979 10 730 430 300 .589 60 37 23 .617 [23]
1 Cunningham, BillyBilly Cunningham Philadelphia 76ers (1983) 19771985 8 650 454 196 .698 105 66 39 .629 [24]
1 Fitch, BillBill Fitch Boston Celtics (1981) 19701988, 19891992, 19941998 25 2,050 944 1,106 .460 109 55 54 .505 [25]
1 Gottlieb, EdwardEdward Gottlieb Philadelphia Warriors (1947) 19461955 9 581 263 318 .453 32 15 17 .469 [26]
1 Harrison, LesterLester Harrison Rochester Royals (1951) 19481955 7 476 295 181 .620 38 19 19 .500 [27]
1 Jeannette, BuddyBuddy Jeannette Baltimore Bullets (1948) 19471952, 19641966, 19661968 7 354 151 203 .427 24 14 10 .583 [28]
1 Kerr, SteveSteve Kerr^ Golden State Warriors (2015) 2014–present 2 164 140 24 .854 45 31 14 .689 [29]
1 Lue, TyronnTyronn Lue^ Cleveland Cavaliers (2016) 2016–present 1 41 27 14 .659 21 16 5 .762 [30]
1 Motta, DickDick Motta Washington Bullets (1978) 19681980, 19801987, 19901991, 19941997 25 1,952 935 1,017 .479 126 56 70 .444 [31]
1 Ramsay, JackJack Ramsay* Portland Trail Blazers (1977) 19691972, 19731988 21 1,647 864 783 .525 102 44 58 .431 [32]
1 Rivers, DocDoc Rivers^ Boston Celtics (2008) 19992003, 20042013, 2013–present 17 1,306 753 553 .577 154 79 75 .513 [33]
1 Senesky, GeorgeGeorge Senesky Philadelphia Warriors (1956) 19551959 3 216 119 97 .551 20 10 10 .500 [34]
1 Sharman, BillBill Sharman* Los Angeles Lakers (1972) 19661968, 19711977 7 573 333 240 .581 62 35 27 .565 [35]
1 Westhead, PaulPaul Westhead Los Angeles Lakers (1980) 19791981, 1982–1983, 19901992 6 407 183 224 .450 19 13 6 .684 [36]
1 Wilkens, LennyLenny Wilkens* Seattle SuperSonics (1979) 19691972, 19741976, 19771985, 19862003, 20042005 32 2,487 1,332 1,155 .536 178 80 98 .449 [37]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  • a Each year is linked to an article about the BAA/NBA Finals in that year.
  • b Each year is linked to an article about that particular BAA/NBA season.

References[edit]

General
Specific
  1. ^ Goldaper, Sam. "The First Game". NBA.com. Turner Sports Interactive, Inc. Retrieved August 4, 2010. 
  2. ^ "1949–50 Season Overview: Powerful Lakers Repeat". NBA.com. Turner Sports Interactive, Inc. Retrieved August 4, 2010. 
  3. ^ "Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Inductees". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved August 4, 2010. 
  4. ^ "NBA coaches who have won NBA championships as players, too". Fox Sports. June 17, 2015. Retrieved August 4, 2015. 
  5. ^ Vogel, Brandon (June 20, 2016). "Hot Reads: Tryonn". Hail Varsity. Retrieved June 30, 2016. 
  6. ^ "Phil Jackson Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 
  7. ^ "Red Auerbach Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved April 19, 2010. 
  8. ^ "John Kundla Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved May 17, 2010. 
  9. ^ "Pat Riley Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved August 4, 2010. 
  10. ^ "Gregg Popovich Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved April 30, 2015. 
  11. ^ "Chuck Daly Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved May 16, 2010. 
  12. ^ "Alex Hannum Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved May 17, 2010. 
  13. ^ "Tom Heinsohn Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved June 1, 2010. 
  14. ^ "Red Holzman Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved May 16, 2010. 
  15. ^ "K. C. Jones Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved May 17, 2010. 
  16. ^ "Bill Russell Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved June 10, 2010. 
  17. ^ "Rudy Tomjanovich Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved May 17, 2010. 
  18. ^ "Erik Spoelstra Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved June 22, 2012. 
  19. ^ "Al Attles Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved May 16, 2010. 
  20. ^ "Larry Brown Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 
  21. ^ "Rick Carlisle Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved June 22, 2012. 
  22. ^ "Al Cervi Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved July 29, 2010. 
  23. ^ "Larry Costello Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved May 17, 2010. 
  24. ^ "Billy Cunningham Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved June 1, 2010. 
  25. ^ "Bill Fitch Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved April 19, 2010. 
  26. ^ "Edward Gottlieb Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved June 10, 2010. 
  27. ^ "Les Harrison Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved August 9, 2010. 
  28. ^ "Buddy Jeanette Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved May 4, 2015. 
  29. ^ "Steve Kerr Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved May 11, 2016. 
  30. ^ "Tyronn Lue Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved June 19, 2016. 
  31. ^ "Dick Motta Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved April 19, 2010. 
  32. ^ "Jack Ramsay Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved April 19, 2010. 
  33. ^ "Doc Rivers Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved June 22, 2012. 
  34. ^ "George Senesky Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved June 1, 2012. 
  35. ^ "Bill Sharman Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved July 29, 2010. 
  36. ^ "Paul Westhead Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved August 9, 2010. 
  37. ^ "Lenny Wilkens Coaching Record". basketball-reference.com. Retrieved April 15, 2010.