First, let's give Lionel Hollins a big ol' congratulations for coaching the Grizzlies to their best season in franchise history, posting a .621 winning percentage and leading them to the 4th seed in the West, and home-court in the first round of the playoffs. With several hurdles this season, including the return of Rudy Gay and the injury to Zach Randolph, I for one can argue that he should at the very least be among the top 2-3 candidates for Coach of the Year.
Well, I guess it's not major disappointment that he officially finished 4th overall when today's results were announced earlier in the day.
A great honor for Hollins, who, like I said, deserved great consideration for this award considering the season he and the Grizzlies had, and are having, in 2011-12.
Results, after the jump...
2011-12 NBA COACH OF THE YEAR RESULTS
Coach, Team 1st 2nd 3rd Pts
Gregg Popovich, San Antonio 77 24 10 467
Tom Thibodeau, Chicago 27 53 21 315
Frank Vogel, Indiana 7 27 45 161
Lionel Hollins, Memphis 6 3 11 50
Doc Rivers, Boston 1 4 9 26
Scott Brooks, Oklahoma City 0 2 3 9
Tyrone Corbin, Utah 0 1 6 9
George Karl, Denver 1 0 2 7
Mike Brown, L.A. Lakers 0 1 1 4
Stan Van Gundy, Orlando 0 1 1 4
Larry Drew, Atlanta 0 0 3 3
Monty Williams, New Orleans 0 1 0 3
Vinny Del Negro, L.A. Clippers 0 0 2 2
Kevin McHale, Houston 0 0 2 2
Alvin Gentry, Phoenix 0 0 1 1
That's right, he picked up six first-place votes, three second-place votes and 11 third-place votes. Again, all well-deserved.
To be honest, though, I have no real complaints with the three coaches who finished ahead of him. Coach Popovich continues to do a terrific job with the age and mileage on his team, while developing young talent and still finding a way to incorporate the likes of Stephen Jackson and Boris Diaw down the stretch. Just a fantastic coaching job.
As for Thibodeau, he obviously did a fantastic job leading a team, who at points throughout the season were without Derek Rose and, more or less, Joakim Noah, to the first-overall seed in the East. Same goes for Vogel, who led the Pacers to the third seed in the East, after years of being a first-round walk-over in the playoffs.
Again, I have no real beef with writers giving their votes to the three aforementioned coaches. I just, selfishly, would have loved to see him win the honor. But...
Congratulations to Hollins for getting great recognition for the job he's done this season. Now, let's hope he can continue his magic and coach us out of this first-round series with the Clippers.