As teams begin to separate themselves in the early-going of the 2020-21 season, some of the struggling NBA coaches will inevitably feel less comfortable with their positions. There have been many moves across the league in recent years as far as coaching is concerned, some successful and others not so much. This list is dedicated to the NBA coaches who have found themselves on the "hot seat" this season and what could be next for them and their teams.
5 NBA Coaches at risk of being fired in the 2020-21 regular season
This list does not only concern the matter of losing, as sometimes coaches are placed into positions with very few resources. There are truly no 'bad' NBA coaches in the league, just simply bad fits.
If NBA coaches are incapable of getting their message through to their players, the coaches are likely the wrong person for that particular job. This does not mean the coach could not step into a different program and make his strategy work. With that, here are the five NBA coaches at the highest risk of losing their jobs this season.
Scott Brooks - Washington Wizards
Scott Brooks has been the head coach of the Washington Wizards since the beginning of the 2016 season, and previously coached the Oklahoma City Thunder. Brooks has had winning seasons with both franchises, but Washington seems to be a bad fit for both parties. The Wizards have tried making moves to improve their chances at winning, but even with Russell Westbrook and Bradley Beal, this team can not seem to mesh.
Unfortunately, when good players aren't enough to win games, the blame turns to the NBA coaches. Scott Brooks could quite possibly be spending his last season as head coach of the Wizards, and the players in Washington could likely benefit from some change.
Luke Walton - Sacramento Kings
Luke Walton has coached as an assistant or head coach in the NBA since 2011, but has struggled to find his footing with the Sacramento Kings. The Kings have loads of young talent, including Buddy Hield and De'Aron Fox, but have hovered near the bottom of the Western Conference since Walton's arrival. The necessity for change in Sacramento is not yet urgent, but if Luke Walton can not find a way to guide this team to the postseason, his job could be up for grabs.
Terry Stotts - Portland Trail Blazers
The Portland Trail Blazers are not a bad team by any means, but they just can't seem to win when it matters. The Trail Blazers have two bona fide stars in Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum, but have yet to make it past the Conference Finals in the playoffs.
Since Terry Stotts' arrival in Portland for the 2012-13 season, the Trail Blazers have missed the playoffs just once but have been non-competitive in several series. They've been swept three times and have bowed out of the postseason losing 4-1 four other times.
From the overall tone of Trail Blazers' fans on Twitter, it seems they've seen enough as well. Perhaps it is time for a different choice in NBA coaches and a fresh start for the Portland Trail Blazers.
Dwane Casey - Detroit Pistons
While the Detroit Pistons' front office has been making moves to try to improve their team, nothing seems to work. The Pistons currently have the worst record in the NBA, sitting at 2-9 through 11 games. The Pistons have not had a winning record to finish a season since 2015-16, and are showing little to no signs of improvement. Dwane Casey will likely be under the microscope of the Pistons' upper management for the remainder of their games, and could very well be one of the NBA coaches without a job by the end of the season.
Ryan Saunders - Minnesota Timberwolves
The Minnesota Timberwolves took a chance on hiring Ryan Saunders for his first job as one of the NBA coaches. Saunders was the Timberwolves' assistant coach from 2014-2019, getting the head coaching job after Minnesota fired Tom Thibodeau.
The Timberwolves have some talent in the form of Karl-Anthony Towns and D'Angelo Russell but have been unable to find a way to win games since Saunders' arrival. The Timberwolves are 22-53 since Ryan Saunders had his interim tag lifted, and it could be time for a new gameplan in Minnesota.
Each of the 30 NBA coaches across the league has some value, but when the teams are not performing to a certain standard, fingers start to get pointed. None of the NBA coaches are bad instructors, but sometimes a fresh start is the only solution for a team in a drought.Published 14 Jan 2021, 09:56 IST