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Sam Mitchell wins Coach of Year

 


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| Apr. 24, 2007

sam mitchell wins nba coach of yearToronto Raptors head coach Sam Mitchell has been named the winner of the Red Auerbach Trophy as the NBA Coach of the Year for the 2006-07 season, the NBA announced today.

In his third season as the Raptorsí head coach, Mitchell totaled 389 points, including 49 first-place votes, from a panel of 128 sportswriters and broadcasters throughout the United States and Canada. Utah Jazz head coach Jerry Sloan was second with 301 points (39 first-place votes) and the Dallas Mavericksí Avery Johnson was third with 268 points (28 first-place votes). Coaches were awarded five points for each first-place vote, three points for each second-place vote and one point for each third-place vote received.

Mitchell, the first coach in Raptors history to receive the honor, led the Raptors to their first Atlantic Division title and a franchise-record-tying 47 wins. The sixth head coach in franchise history, Mitchell guided the team to an NBA-best 20-game improvement (27-55) over the 2005-06 season. The Raptors were 30-7 this season when they scored 100 or more points and 38-4 when they had a better (or same) field goal percentage than their opponents.

In January, Mitchell became only the second coach in Raptors history to earn Eastern Conference Coach of the Month honors after leading the team to a 10-5 record. During the month, Toronto recorded a 7-3 mark at home and was 8-2 versus Eastern Conference opponents. January was the Raptorsí first 10-win month since January 2002 (11-5) and the fifth double-digit win month in franchise history. The Raptors finished January leading the Atlantic Division by one game with a 23-23 record and then compiled a 24-12 record to close out the rest of the season.

During his 13-year playing career, Mitchell was held in high regard around the league as a student of the game and when he finally hung up his sneakers in 2002, he went from student to teacher in his new role as an NBA coach. Following two seasons as an assistant coach, Mitchell was named the Raptorsí sixth head coach on June 29, 2004. Although the Raptors finished 33-49 in Mitchellís first season, the campaign under his direction was highlighted by the implementation of a more up-tempo style of play that saw the teamís points per game average increase by 14.3 over the previous season, the third-highest jump in NBA history.

The Coach of the Year Award is named after legendary coach and Hall of Famer Red Auerbach who guided the Celtics to nine NBA Championships. In 1996, Auerbach was honored as one of the Top 10 Coaches in NBA History as the NBA celebrated its 50th anniversary.

Following are the balloting results for the 2006-07 NBA Coach of the Year award and the all-time list of winners:


2006-07 NBA COACH OF THE YEAR RESULTS

Coach, Team                      1st   2nd    3rd  Pts
Sam Mitchell, Toronto            49    43    20    394
Jerry Sloan, Utah                39    28    22    301
Avery Johnson, Dallas            28    31    35    268
Jeff Van Gundy, Houston          10    19    27    134
Mike DíAntoni, Phoenix           2     3     3     22
Don Nelson, Golden State         --    2     7     13
Scott Skiles, Chicago            --    1     9     12
Pat Riley, Miami                 --    1     --    3
Gregg Popovich, San Antonio      --    --    2     2
George Karl, Denver              --    --    1     1
Flip Saunders, Detroit           --    --    1     1
Isiah Thomas, New York           --    --    1     1


ALL-TIME NBA COACH OF THE YEAR WINNERS

1962-63 - Harry Gallatin, St. Louis*
1963-64 - Alex Hannum, San Francisco
1964-65 - Red Auerbach, Boston
1965-66 - Dolph Schayes, Philadelphia
1966-67 - Johnny Kerr, Chicago*
1967-68 - Richie Guerin, St. Louis
1968-69 - Gene Shue, Baltimore
1969-70 - Red Holzman, New York
1970-71 - Dick Motta, Chicago
1971-72 - Bill Sharman, Los Angeles
1972-73 - Tom Heinsohn, Boston
1973-74 - Ray Scott, Detroit
1974-75 - Phil Johnson, Kansas City-Omaha
1975-76 - Bill Fitch, Cleveland
1976-77 - Tom Nissalke, Houston
1977-78 - Hubie Brown, Atlanta
1978-79 - Cotton Fitzsimmons, Kansas City
1979-80 - Bill Fitch, Boston
1980-81 - Jack McKinney, Indiana
1981-82 - Gene Shue, Washington
1982-83 - Don Nelson, Milwaukee
1983-84 - Frank Layden, Utah
1984-85 - Don Nelson, Milwaukee
1985-86 - Mike Fratello, Atlanta
1986-87 - Mike Schuler, Portland*
1987-88 - Doug Moe, Denver
1988-89 - Cotton Fitzsimmons, Phoenix
1989-90 - Pat Riley, LA Lakers
1990-91 - Don Chaney, Houston
1991-92 - Don Nelson, Golden State
1992-93 - Pat Riley, New York
1993-94 - Lenny Wilkens, Atlanta
1994-95 - Del Harris, Los Angeles Lakers
1995-96 - Phil Jackson, Chicago
1996-97 - Pat Riley, Miami
1997-98 - Larry Bird, Indiana*
1998-99 - Mike Dunleavy, Portland
1999-00 - Doc Rivers, Orlando*
2000-01 - Larry Brown, Philadelphia
2001-02 - Rick Carlisle, Detroit*
2002-03 - Gregg Popovich, San Antonio
2003-04 - Hubie Brown, Memphis
2004-05 - Mike DíAntoni, Phoenix
2005-06 - Avery Johnson, Dallas*
2006-07 Ė Sam Mitchell, Toronto

*First-year head coach



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