2018 NBA Playoffs: 5 head coaches who have underperformed
After 4 games of each playoff series have been played, we have had the chance to evaluate every team in depth. While a couple of teams have exceeded expectations and have made stellar runs so far, we've seen a number of teams let fans down in one way or another.
The following 5 teams have all the star power in the world but have simply been unable to perform anywhere close to their ceiling. They are all languishing at the floor of their capabilities, and are finding it way too difficult to find a mantra for success.
Much of the blame for such a state of affairs has to be laid on the head coach's feet in every single case. And thus, we rank the coaches whose teams have played so far below potential this postseason that their management would be better off letting these head coaches go in the offseason.
Our top 5 underperforming coaches are as follows:
#5 Joe Prunty
A team shooting 54.1% on its field goal attempts (lead the league) should not be tied at 2-2 in a series against a team missing 3 important players, including 2 All-Stars. Joe Prunty, in his tenure as interim coach, has been below-par and is nowhere near capable of filling in for the head coaching job full-time.
As a former assistant for Gregg Popovich, it should be assumed that Prunty is capable of making reads that casual fans are able to. For instance, given that the Bucks have an objectively weak center rotation that has gotten even weaker after John Henson's injury, it makes sense to play a 6'11" forward with a 7'4" wingspan at center.
But instead, Tyler Zeller has been named to the starting lineup and has not made any impact whatsoever. Giannis being in the post every possession for a continued stretch is basically a guarantee of an offensive bailout in the worst-case scenario, but such a simple idea does not seem to be good enough for Prunty.
He neglected to place Malcolm Brogdon in the starting lineup for the first 2 games, opting instead to ease him back into the setup. That was one of the major reasons why the Bucks got outmatched in the backcourt. With all due respect to Terry Rozier and Jaylen Brown, veterans like Snell and Bledsoe shouldn't be getting cooked as they did in the first 2 games of the series.
Jabari Parker has not been able to find any rhythm, and it was expected that he would be a featured scorer on their roster. All-in-all, this is not a good look for Prunty on the sidelines.