Fwd: Nate McMillan -- Underrated Third Place Coach Of The Year

Golden State Warriors at Portland Trailblazers

The Portland Trailblazers' coach, Nate McMillan. (Source: Yardbarker.com)

On the front page of FanSided I had the following:

First off, congrats to Oklahoma City’s Scott Brooks for winning Coach Of The Year. Without a doubt, the dude deserved it. As everyone likes to point, he took a team that started last year 3-29 and without any real significant personnel additions, turned them into this season’s 50-win team. We all knew they’d be good, particularly since after that 3-29 start they went 20-30, but no one expected them to be this good this soon. The scary thing to imagine is how good they’d be if they’d used their #3 draft pick on Tyreke Evans or Stephen Curry instead of James Harden. I know they wanted Russell Westbrook to remain the man at point guard so they chose the top shooting guard prospect, but c’mon, both ‘Reke and Curry can play the two. At 6′6″, presumed Rookie of the Year ‘Reke is even an inch taller than Harden. I imagine he’d get more than the 13 minutes/game that Harden’s averaged during the first two playoff battles. But I came here not to talk Thunder, but Trailblazer.

The man who came in second place for Coach Of The Year was the Bucks’ Scott Skiles, another well-deserving candidate. In the off-season Milwaukee lost Richard Jefferson, Charlie Villanueva and Ramon Sessions, then only got 18 games out of leading scorer Michael Redd (and in many of those games even Redd’s minutes/abilities were limited due to injuries). Yet Skiles got his team to buy in on defense (which has always been his calling card), and with the late-season trade for John Salmons, brought them to an impressive 46 wins (& they might’ve had even more if not for Andrew Bogut’s season-ending injury at the beginning of this month). Um, however, this isn’t about him either.

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Tags: James Harden Milwaukee Bucks Nate McMillan Oklahoma City Thunder Portland Trail Blazers Russell Westbrook Scott Brooks Scott Skiles Stephen Curry Tyreke Evans

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