The Golden State Warriors have signed Head Coach Don Nelson to a contract extension, it was announced today by President Robert Rowell. Per team policy, terms of the agreement were not announced.
“We’re elated that Don has elected to sign an extension,” said Rowell. “He has proven to be one of the most successful and innovative coaches in the history of our game and his continued presence on the sidelines is certainly a prominent asset for our team and organization. Our fans and players enjoy his entertaining style and we all look forward to the day he establishes the NBA’s all-time wins record for a coach.”
Nelson, 68, is currently the second-winningest coach in NBA history (1,280 wins), trailing only Lenny Wilkens (1,332) on the league’s all-time victory list. Over the first two seasons of his most recent stint with Golden State, Nelson has posted a combined 90-74 record (.549) and guided the Warriors to their first consecutive winning campaigns since 1990-91 and 1991-92.
“I’m thankful for the opportunity to continue to coach this team,” said Nelson. “I’ve really enjoyed the last two years in the Bay Area and I’m excited about the future and the potential of our young team. Additionally, I’d like to thank Chris Cohan, the entire Warriors organization and our great fans for their incredible support. This is a special place for me.”
Last season, Nelson guided the Warriors to a 48-34 record, marking the team’s best record since 1993-94 and just the ninth time in franchise history (since 1946) and the third time since 1975-76 that the team has amassed 48 victories in a single season. Additionally, Golden State’s 48-34 (.585) record in 2007-08 marked the best record for a non-playoff team since the NBA adopted its current 16-team postseason format prior to the 1984 NBA Playoffs.
Nelson returned to Golden State prior to the 2006-07 campaign, leading the Warriors to a 42-40 record that season and their first trip to the NBA Playoffs in 13 years. Additionally, he guided Golden State to a First Round triumph over the top-seeded Dallas Mavericks, marking the first time that a #8 seed had defeated a #1 seed in a seven-game series in NBA history.
Entering in his 30th season as an NBA head coach in 2008-09, Nelson has compiled a 1,280-954 (.573) record in 2,234 regular-season games in 29 years. Only Wilkens has coached more NBA games (2,487). In fact, as Nelson embarks on his 45th year in the NBA as a player, coach, general manager or consultant, only Wilkens has more combined games as a player and head coach than the 3,287 that “Nellie” has registered in his career.