Monty Williams just became the most recent winner of the NBA Coach of the Year award. The Phoenix Suns head coach will be getting himself the Red Auerbach Trophy because of this major accomplishment. Williams has never won this award in his career as a coach, which makes the moment that much more special. In addition to that, only two other coaches in Suns history have claimed this title. Those guys being Cotton Fitzsimmons in 1988 and Mike D’Antoni in 2004.
When looking at the votes, Williams dominated it completely. Out of a panel with 100 voters, Williams picked up 81 first place votes. Add on the rest of his votes and he ended with 458 total points in the race. Second place came another Western Conference coach. That being the Memphis Grizzlies Taylor Jenkins. Jenkins had only 270 points but gained that from just 17 first place votes. If you happened to be wondering who got that third place, that goes to the Miami Heat’s Erik Spoelstra. He had just 72 points and one first place vote.
Monty Williams Deserved This Award
Williams claiming this award wasn’t a big surprise in all honesty. He led the Suns to a league leading 64-18 overall record throughout the regular season. The franchise hasn’t ever seen that many wins in a single season ever. They also haven’t had nearly as high of a winning percentage. Phoenix performed exactly the same at home as they did on the road, which is a fun little stat to think about. They were 32-9 in their own stadium and on the road, identical records. When looking at this record on the road, it was the third most amount of road wins that they have received in a single season in history. It was also the fifth best road winning percentage in league history, not just Phoenix history.
Why stop there though? The Suns had a streak of 18 straight wins during the year as well. That span was a franchise record once again. During that streak they were 16-0 during the month of November.
Diving a bit deeper into some of their overall stats makes his case even better. The Suns were first in the league when it came to net rating at +7.5. They were third in the league in defensive rating at 106.8. Then they were fifth in offensive rating at 114.2. Phoenix now becomes the only team in history to rank in the top five in all three of these categories.
There is a lot more success on the way for Williams and the Suns. After all, this is just his third season with the organization. He helped them reach the NBA Finals last year following a strong 51-21 regular season record. He was also second place in the Coach of the Year award voting that time around.
I think it’s pretty clear that Williams deserved to win this one.
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