Image for Christian Jope Christian Jope - January 23, 2023

2023 NBA Coach of the Year Predictions, Best Bets, Picks

  • Get the most recent 2023 NBA Coach of the Year odds!
  • Boston Celtics head coach Ime Udoka opens as the favorite to win the 2023 NBA Coach of the Year!
  • View stats and trends that will help you beat the sportsbooks!

The NBA returns for its 77th season when the 2022-2023 schedule kicks off. After what has been an exciting offseason, with a number of interesting moves, all eyes are on the coaches who can maximize the talents of their roster.

Ime Udoka leads the pack as the favorite to win the Coach of the Year award in 2023. However, after some breakout performances in the 2022 NBA Playoffs, there are plenty of coaches who look to lead their teams further than last year.

Let’s take a look at the most interesting questions about the NBA Coach of the Year award!

2023 NBA Coach of the Year Odds

Odds taken from DraftKings Sportsbook.

Taylor JenkinsMemphis Grizzlies +310
Michael MaloneDenver Nuggets +330
Tyronn LueLA Clippers+6000
Erik SpoelstraMiami Heat +6000
Darvin HamLos Angeles Lakers+10000

For two seasons preceding the COVID-19 pandemic altered schedule, the NBA Coach of the Year has been named at the annual NBA Awards show. After the cancellation of the NBA Awards ceremony, the prize winner was announced during the NBA Playoffs.

The winner of the 2023 NBA Coach of the Year award will be the 60th winner in NBA history. The first-ever NBA Coach of the Year award was given in 1963.

The criteria that define a Coach of the Year winner is wide but is mostly defined by a team’s improved record.

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Nba Coach Of The Year Monty Williams

Who is the Favorite to Win NBA Coach of the Year in 2023?

Ime Udoka – Boston Celtics

Team Year Record Off Rtg Def Rtg Pace
BOS 21-22 51-31 114.4 (7th of 30) 106.9 (2nd of 30) 96.6 (24th of 30)

The early frontrunner for the 2023 NBA Coach of the Year Award is Boston Celtics head coach Ime Udoka. In his first experience leading an NBA team, Udoka’s Boston Celtics reached the NBA Finals. While they lost in six games, his accomplishment is nothing to scoff at.

After what was thought to be a rehaul of the Boston Celtics’ organization, mainly the departure of Danny Ainge and the resignation of Brad Stevens, Ime Udoka overachieved. The Celtics finished second in the Eastern Conference, just two games behind first place.

It’s to Udoka’s benefit that the main core of his roster is still so young. At 23 and 25 respectively, Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown aren’t even in their prime years and have accomplished so much. With their play at Udoka’s direction, it’s easy to see why he’s the favorite for the award.

Who are the Contenders for 2023 NBA Coach of the Year?

Taylor Jenkins – Memphis Grizzlies

Team Year Record Off Rtg Def Rtg Pace
MEM 21-22 56-26 115.6 (2nd of 30) 109.0 (4th of 30) 100.3 (3rd of 30)

The Memphis Grizzlies are coming off of a season where they surprised many by reaching the Western Conference Semifinals. With the rise of Ja Morant and Memphis’ role players, Taylor Jenkins has all the tools to carve out a place amongst the Western Conference’s elite.

Since joining the Memphis Grizzlies, Taylor Jenkins has improved his teams record every season. In 2022 the Grizzlies tied their franchise record for wins with 56. However with the competitive nature of the Western Conference, Jenkins will have a tall task challenging for the top of the table.

The Memphis Grizzlies haven’t made many big moves this summer, opting to rely on the growth of their home-grown core. If the Grizzlies players can make another jump, Jenkins is the man to lead them to a winning record.

Jason Kidd – Dallas Mavericks

Team Year Record Off Rtg Def Rtg Pace
DAL 21-22 52-30 112.8 (15th of 30) 109.4 (6th of 30) 95.4 (30th of 30)

After a tumultuous time as the head coach of the Milwaukee Bucks, Jason Kidd seems to have found a home in Dallas. Directing a guard with the versatility and playmaking of Luka Doncic has clearly been a pleasure for Kidd, who led the Mavericks to their best record since 2010-2011.

Dallas lost their lead guard in Jalen Brunson this summer, but went in a different direction and acquired versatile big man Christian Wood. With their frontcourt issues hopefully resolved, the Mavericks project to put in an even stronger performance in 2023.

Chris Finch – Minnesota Timberwolves

Team Year Record Off Rtg Def Rtg Pace
MIN 21-22 46-36 114.3 (8th of 30) 111.7 (13th of 30) 100.9 (1st of 30)

The Minnesota Timberwolves may be one of the league’s most interesting teams after acquiring three-time Defensive Player of the Year Rudy Gobert. Chris Finch earned the Timberwolves just their third playoff berth in 18 years, and will look to improve Minnesota’s already young core and high-powered offence.

Who Was the 2022 NBA Coach of the Year?

Phoenix Suns head coach Monty Williams won the 2022 NBA Coach of the Year award. It was Williams’ first time winning the award, after narrowly losing the prize in 2021.

Williams led the 2022 Phoenix Suns to a 64-18 record, the best mark in the Western Conference and NBA. The Suns’ record improved by 13 wins, while going from 9th to 3rd in overall defensive rating.

After narrowly losing the award in 2021, Williams could not be denied in 2022. He earned 81 first place votes, and totalled 458 points in the voting process – more than double the runner-up.

When Will the NBA Coach of the Year be Announced?

The NBA Coach of the Year winner is expected to be named in mid-to-late June, during the NBA Playoffs. The COVID-19 pandemic forced the NBA to adjust their schedule over the last two seasons, cancelling the NBA Awards for the foreseeable future.

There is no set date for when the winner will be announced, but it is usually announced during a broadcast of Inside the NBA.

NBA Coach of the Year by Year

Season Coach Nationality Team
2022 Monty Williams United States Phoenix Suns
2021 Tom Thibodeau (2) United States New York Knicks (3)
2020 Nick Nurse United States Toronto Raptors (3)
2019 Mike Budenholzer (2) United States Milwaukee Bucks (3)
2018 Dwane Casey United States Toronto Raptors (2)
2017 Mike D’Antoni United States/Italy Houston Rockets (3)
2016 Steve Kerr United States Golden State Warriors (3)
2015 Mike Budenholzer United States Atlanta Hawks (6)
2014 Gregg Popovich (3) United States San Antonio Spurs (3)
2013 George Karl United States Denver Nuggets (2)
2012 Gregg Popovich (2) United States San Antonio Spurs (2)
2011 Tom Thibodeau United States Chicago Bulls (4)
2010 Scott Brooks United States Oklahoma City Thunder
2009 Mike Brown United States Cleveland Cavaliers (2)
2008 Byron Scott United States New Orleans Hornets
2007 Sam Mitchell United States Toronto Raptors
2006 Avery Johnson United States Dallas Mavericks
2005 Mike D’Antoni United States/Italy Phoenix Suns (2)
2004 Hubie Brown (2) United States Memphis Grizzlies
2003 Gregg Popovich United States San Antonio Spurs
2002 Rick Carlisle United States Detroit Pistons (2)
2001 Larry Brown United States Philadelphia 76ers (2)
2000 Doc Rivers United States Orlando Magic
1999 Mike Dunleavy United States Portland Trail Blazers (2)
1998 Larry Bird United States Indiana Pacers (2)
1997 Pat Riley (3) United States Miami Heat
1996 Phil Jackson United States Chicago Bulls (3)
1995 Del Harris United States Los Angeles Lakers (3)
1994 Lenny Wilkens United States Atlanta Hawks (3)
1993 Pat Riley (2) United States New York Knicks (2)
1992 Don Nelson (3) United States Golden State Warriors (2)
1991 Don Chaney United States Houston Rockets (2)
1990 Pat Riley United States Los Angeles Lakers (2)
1989 Cotton Fitzsimmons (2) United States Phoenix Suns
1988 Doug Moe United States Denver Nuggets
1987 Mike Schuler United States Portland Trail Blazers
1986 Mike Fratello United States Atlanta Hawks (4)
1985 Don Nelson (2) United States Milwaukee Bucks (2)
1984 Frank Layden United States Utah Jazz
1983 Don Nelson United States Milwaukee Bucks
1982 Gene Shue (2) United States Washington Bullets (2)
1981 Jack McKinney United States Indiana Pacers
1980 Bill Fitch (2) United States Boston Celtics (3)
1979 Cotton Fitzsimmons United States Kansas City Kings (2)
1978 Hubie Brown United States Atlanta Hawks (3)
1977 Tom Nissalke United States Houston Rockets
1976 Bill Fitch United States Cleveland Cavaliers
1975 Phil Johnson United States Kansas City-Omaha Kings
1974 Ray Scott United States Detroit Pistons
1973 Tom Heinsohn United States Boston Celtics (2)
1972 Bill Sharman United States Los Angeles Lakers
1971 Dick Motta United States Chicago Bulls (2)
1970 Red Holzman United States New York Knicks
1969 Gene Shue United States Baltimore Bullets
1968 Richie Guerin United States St. Louis Hawks (2)
1967 Johnny Kerr United States Chicago Bulls
1966 Dolph Schayes United States Philadelphia 76ers
1965 Red Auerbach United States Boston Celtics
1964 Alex Hannum United States San Francisco Warriors
1963 Harry Gallatin United States St. Louis Hawks

Who Selects the NBA Coach of the Year Winner?

The NBA Coach of the Year is selected at the end of the regular season by a panel of sportswriters from the United States and Canada.  Each member of the voting panel casts a vote for their first, second, and third place selections – each vote is worth five, three, and one point, respectively.

The coach who receives the highest point total, regardless of first-place votes, is named the NBA Coach of the Year!

Does the NBA Coach of the Year Receive a Prize?

The NBA Coach of the Year is presented the Red Auerbach Trophy. The trophy is named in honor of the legendary Boston Celtics coach who led his team to nine NBA championships between 1956 and 1966.

Who Has Won NBA Coach of the Year Multiple Times?

Times Won Coach Team Years
3 Don Nelson Milwaukee Bucks (2), Golden State Warriors 1983, 1985, 1992
Pat Riley Los Angeles Lakers, New York Knicks, Miami Heat 1990, 1993, 1997
Gregg Popovich San Antonio Spurs 2003, 2012, 2014
2 Gene Shue Baltimore Bullets, Washington Bullets 1969, 1982
Bill Fitch Cleveland Cavaliers, Boston Celtics 1976, 1980
Hubie Brown Atlanta Hawks, Memphis Grizzlies 1978, 2004
Cotton Fitzsimmons Kansas City Kings, Phoenix Suns 1979, 1989
Mike D’Antoni Phoenix Suns, Houston Rockets 2005, 2017
Mike Budenholzer Atlanta Hawks, Milwaukee Bucks 2015, 2019
Tom Thibodeau Chicago Bulls, New York Knicks 2011, 2021

How Many NBA Coach of the Year Winners are in the Basketball Hall of Fame?

The NBA Coach of the Year Award tends to signify a coach who will go on to enjoy a long NBA career. With enough sustained success, great coaches will be inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame. There have been 12 NBA Coach of the Year winners who have been inducted into the Hall of Fame:

  • Larry Brown
  • Pat Riley
  • Phil Jackson
  • Lenny Wilkens
  • Don Nelson
  • Cotton Fitzsimmons
  • Bill Fitch
  • Tom Heinsohn
  • Bill Sharman
  • Red Holzman
  • Red Auerbach
  • Alex Hannum

Has a Non-American Coach Ever Won Coach of the Year?

Every winner of the NBA Coach of the Year Award has been American. However, two-time Coach of the Year Mike D’Antoni, although born in the United States, holds dual citizenship between the United States and Italy.

Which Team Has Produced the Most Coach of the Year Winners?

The team that has produced the most NBA Coach of the Year Winners have been the Atlanta Hawks, as well as its former iteration the St. Louis Hawks. The six winners for the Atlanta Hawks were:

  • 2015: Mike Budenholzer
  • 1994: Lenny Wilkens
  • 1986: Mike Fratello
  • 1978: Hubie Brown
  • 1968: Richie Guerin
  • 1963: Harry Gallatin

Which Team Has Never Produced a Coach of the Year Winner?

In current NBA history, there are only three teams that have not produced an NBA Coach of the Year winner:

  • Minnesota Timberwolves
  • Brooklyn Nets
  • LA Clippers

2023 sees Timberwolves head coach Chris Finch and LA Clippers head coach Tyronn Lue as real contenders to earn their team’s first Coach of the Year Award

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Christian Jope

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Christian Jope is a writer, social media strategist, and data analyst. A Queen’s University Alumni, Christian is an author and social media strategist with Raptors Cage, while also working closely with MLSE and Canada Basketball through community-driven events.

Email: [email protected]

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