March 6, 2020; Los Angeles, California, USA; Milwaukee Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer watches game action against the Los Angeles Lakers during the first half at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

NBA coaches were in a giving mood for this year’s Coach of the Year vote. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Mike Budenholzer from the Milwaukee Bucks and Billy Donovan from the Oklahoma City Thunder tied and became National Basketball Coaches Association Co-Coaches of the Year. The NBCA Coach of the Year vote is voted by fellow head coaches and is different from the NBA Coach of the Year, which will be decided among members of the media sometime later.

It’s pretty rare that any season award ends in a tie but Woj said that we were close to having a three-way tie, as Toronto Raptors coach Nick Nurse fell one vote short of having three winners.

I’m not sure if it’s the best look to make 10 percent of the coaches the winner but all three would’ve earned the award.

Budenholzer repeated his award winning 2018-19 season with the Bucks having the best record in the NBA so far. This season will be crucial to see if the Bucks can get over the hump and make the NBA Finals but he certainly has the Bucks taking control of the East.

Donovan may have the Thunder sixth in the West but his recognition is deserved due to how the team performed despite trading Paul George and Russell Westbrook before the season. While everyone was thinking rebuild, the Thunder we’re still looking to win and currently have a better win percentage (.631) over last season (.598).

And while Nick Nurse was left out, it’s understandable that people felt he deserved to win. Many felt Nurse was ignored last season when he shocked the world in his first year as an NBA head coach, winning the NBA championship with the Toronto Raptors. This season, despite the Bucks being ahead by six games, the Raptors have a slightly better win percentage (.723) over 2018-19 (.707) and is on-track to potentially go back-to-back in the NBA Finals.

As you can see, there are many coaches deserving recognition and if this is any indication, it’ll be a close vote for NBA Coach of the Year.


About Phillip Bupp

Producer/editor of the Awful Announcing Podcast and Short and to the Point. News editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. Highlight consultant for Major League Soccer as well as a freelance writer for hire. Opinions are my own but feel free to agree with them.

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