NBA

Suns’ Monty Williams Wins NBA Coach of the Year

May 15, 2021; San Antonio, Texas, USA; Phoenix Suns head coach Monty Williams in the second quarter of the game against the San Antonio Spurs at AT&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports
Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports

The head coach of the Phoenix Suns, Monty Williams, won Coach of the Year early Tuesday morning. His team finished the season with a 51-21 record, putting them at the second seed in the Western Conference.

“I hold the utmost respect and admiration for the coaches in this league, so to be recognized by my peers is an incredible honor. Every coach in our league sacrifices a ton to make their teams and organizations better, so this is unbelievably humbling.”

-Monty Williams

However, Monty Williams was not the only coach to get votes among his peers. Additionally, Scott Brooks, Michael Malone, Quin Snyder, Doc Rivers, Tom Thibodeau, and Nate McMillan all received votes.

“Congratulations to Monty Williams on this most deserving recognition. In just two years, Monty has taken the Suns from a 19-63 team to the second-best record in the NBA this season and the Suns’ first Divisional title since 2007. To win the vote of our peers makes the Michael H. Goldberg NBCA Coach of the Year Award one of the most meaningful in all of pro sports.”

-Rick Carlisle, Head Coach of the Dallas Mavericks and NBCA President

Suns’ Turnaround This Season

Apr 12, 2021; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Phoenix Suns head coach Monty Williams talks to his team in the second half against the Houston Rockets at Phoenix Suns Arena. Mandatory Credit: Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports
Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

Rick Carlisle is right. In the 2018-2019 season, the Suns had the worst record in the Western Conference with 19 wins and 63 losses. After this season, Monty Williams took over. In Monty William’s first season, the Suns barely missed the playoffs as they had 34 wins and 39 losses, holding the 10th seed. However, Williams was able to elevate the Phoenix Suns, increasing their wins by 15 in his season as the Suns’ head coach.

In the offseason, the Suns acquired Chris Paul from the Oklahoma City Thunder. Moreover, their team began to experience a culture change. The team that was always looked down upon changed to a legitimate contender. Consequently, the Suns finished the regular season as the second seed in the Western Conference. Furthermore, Monty Williams took a 15th seeded Phoenix Suns team in only two years to their first positive record since 2014 and a Pacific Division Title.

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