It’s been over a month since the NBA season started. After around 20 regular season games, we can clearly pick the biggest surprises such as the Detroit Pistons, Indiana Pacers, Utah Jazz, and Houston Rockets. However, there are also few teams that have turned into bigger or smaller upset — those who have severely disappointed so far this season. Join us as we present the top 5 coaches who need to be out of a job.
5. Doc Rivers – Los Angeles Clippers (8-11)
After trading Chris Paul to the Rockets and signing Danilo Gallinari and Milos Teodosic this summer, the LA Clippers started the season pretty well — they won their first 4 games. However, injury problems reared their head soon enough — Beverly is out for a season, and Gallinari and Teodosic should be able to play in December. Blake Griffin’s situation is also a huge blow to the Clippers, being ruled out for the next 2 months after a knee injury. The team from Los Angeles is only 14th in PPG average and 20th in defensive rating in the entire league. Things need to change soon in LA, starting with Rivers’ job.
4. Steve Clifford – Charlotte Hornets (8-12)
Despite signing Dwight Howard during free agency, the team led by Clifford is only average. Every advanced statistic puts the Hornets between the 10th to 19th place in the league. With a huge effort from all players, they were able to beat the Timberwolves and Wizards. Unfortunately though, Charlotte are on a 3-game skid, falling to the Raptors yesterday.
3. Mike Budenholzer – Atlanta Hawks (4-16)
During the end of October and beginning of November, the Hawks lost 8 games in a row. The only major victories this season were against the Cleveland Cavaliers and New York Knicks. Even with Dennis Schroder, who’s had a solid season (19.7 PPG and 6.8 APG), the Hawks still have one of the worst PPG averages in the league and are bad both in offensive and defensive rating. Atlanta lost their last game to the Raptors by a whopping 34 points.
2. Billy Donovan – Oklahoma City Thunder (8-12)
OKC’s aspirations after getting both Carmelo Anthony and Paul George during the off-season have been slightly dashed only 20 games into the season. Despite having the 2nd best defensive rating in the league (101.4), the Thunder are 1 game behind the 8th seed in the West (the Utah Jazz). It is mainly because of their bad offense, which we are able to see just by looking at the stats: 23rd in PPG average and 21st in offensive rating. You can’t beat the best teams in the NBA with such poor ratings. Most of the NBA’s coaches would love to have so many talented players such as Westbrook, Melo and PG13, and would do a much better job than Donovan.
1. Fred Hoiberg – Chicago Bulls (3-15)
The Bulls have lost 5 games in a row twice this season. They were able to beat only the Hawks, Magic and Hornets so far. They have the worst PPG average as a team (94.3) in the league, worst offensive rating (96.7) and are 23rd in defensive rating (109.6). The best player on this team is probably rookie Lauri Markkanen (14.4 PPG, 8.3 RPG), which isn’t great news for the rest of the roster. The Bulls are just beginning their extremely slow rebuilding process. If they want to rejoin the top teams of the East, the first step will be replacing Hoiberg.