The Coaches That Can’t Help but Throw a Wrench in Your Plans
With the NBA regular season coming to a close, we’ll take a look at our least favorite coaches this year. Don’t get me wrong, some of these guys are successful, smart coaches who make good decisions for their team, but they’ve all been frustrating factors when picking players from their teams in Daily Fantasy NBA.
5. Gregg Popovich (San Antonio Spurs)
One could argue Gregg Popovich is the greatest NBA coach of all time. With four NBA titles under his belt, he is the longest tenured active coach not just in the NBA, but in any major sports league in the United States. The San Antonio Spurs are currently the oldest team in the NBA with an average player age of 31.8 years old. Part of his winning NBA strategy includes making sure his players(particularly older ones) are well rested by allowing them to skip games for rest and limiting their minutes in the games they do play. This has led to many infuriating performances by Spurs players this season. Many a time this season the Spurs’ players have started games hot, but by game’s end haven’t met their value due to blowouts. Gregg Popvich makes the list because he and his team are too damn good.
4. Rick Carlisle (Dallas Mavericks)
Rick Carlisle led the Dallas Mavericks to a Championship during the 2010-2012 season. Like the Spurs, the Mavericks have a very old team, coming in just one spot behind the Spurs. Perhaps this is the reason Carlisle seems so willing to give up on games. All coaches reach a point where their team is getting blown out by too much and they decide to bench the starters, but this point comes much quicker for Rick Carlisle. It’s been quite the ‘sweat’ watching Mavericks’ player this season any time the game isn’t very close. Whether they’re up too much or down too much, Carlisle’s been quick to pull the plug.
3. Sam Mitchell (Minnesota Timberwolves)
Until this season, Sam Mitchell had not held a NBA head coaching job since he was fired by the Raptors in 2008. Mitchell picked up the job for the Minnesota Timberwolves after the passing of beloved coach Flip Saunders. T-wolves fans had high hopes this year after adding first overall pick Karl-Anthony Towns to their already promising roster of young talent. While the T-wolves did take a step forward, it wasn’t the strong push fans expected. Early in the season fans and DFS players alike complained about Towns’ lack of minutes played. Towns can really fill up the box score, but to make up for his high price he requires playing enough minutes. In addition to limiting Towns for seemingly no reason, Mitchell frequently benched players for poor performance and the fact the T-wolves were always losing led to a lot of variance in the minutes of his players.
2. Byron Scott (Los Angeles Lakers)
Where to Begin…
This year the Lakers have essentially become an exhibition team. When teams face the Lakers it’s nearly a ‘free square’. The Lakers have put the development of their team on the back burner for the entire season to instead feature the ‘Kobe Show’. While there’s no disputing Kobe is one of the best NBA players of all time, he has not aged as gracefully as someone like Tim Duncan. Kobe has taken the most field goal attempts per game of all Lakers while only shooting 35% from the field.
Just as it would be very difficult to project minutes and production from Harlem Globetrotters, it’s also very difficult to predict for the Lakers. Kobe’s volatility this season has made him a very tough pick, even with his absurdly high usage percentage. Kobe also makes it difficult to pick other Lakers in DFS, as his high usage takes away from the opportunities of those on the floor with him. Not to mention the Lakers are being consistently blown out, making it difficult to use any of their players.
Plain and simple, Byron Scott is not a good coach. He has a 450-633 record as a head coach in the NBA. It pains me not to have him as number one on a ‘worst’ list, but even as the leader of the madness that is the Los Angeles Lakers, it only earns him the number 2 spot.
***Note: Some really unfortunate timing for me, the day I write this article the Lakers beat the Warriors by what I can only assume was divine intervention. Kobe went 4-14, but Byron Scott is still terrible.
1. Scott Skiles (Orlando Magic)
If I was not a huge NBA fan, I would probably think Scott Skiles was a mentally unstable person the Magic pulled off the street to coach their team. Like the T-wolves, the Magic had hoped to take big steps forward with their young talented roster this season. With three quarters of the season in the books, the Magic have already won 2 more games than all of last season. Perhaps Skiles can be attributed to the small increase in success, but as a Daily Fantasy player it’s tough to attribute Skiles with anything other than pain.
Unlike the Lakers, the Magic are able to stay competitive more often. Typically this would make it easier to project minutes for a team, but not if Scott Skiles has anything to say about it. Skiles has repeatedly benched players and often entire units for seemingly no reason this season. He’s incredibly quick to swap out a player who has even the shortest stint of poor play. When Gregg Popovich pulls players it’s because they’re winning, which means they could have already hit their value projection. Skiles will pull players out of games randomly and the huge hit to players’ minutes can kill their value.
Many times I’ve found myself fist pumping at a Magic player’s performance and then minutes later found myself yelling at the TV. For this reason Scott Skiles is the winner of my 2015-2016’s worst Daily Fantasy coach in the NBA. Just looking at him right now makes me want to vomit.