Mavs Nation knows that the end of the road for their beloved “star” will becoming to an end soon. With the players that the team has now it does not seem like a team that could compete for a playoff spot. They have Shawn Marion, Elton Brand, O.J. Mayo, Darren Collison, Chris Kaman and Vince Carter. That doesn’t really make of a playoff team does it?
Although, the Mavs have only played five games and are 4-1 they are playing like each game is a “Game 7.” The reason being is that their coach is Rick Carlisle. If the Mavericks keep playing like they are then Carlisle may be consider one of the top contenders for “Coach Of The Year.”
There’s no doubt that Carlisle is one of the best coach that this franchise ever had. I mean, he did coach this club to their first NBA Championship in 2011. However, can he really be consider the best coach in Dallas Mavericks history?
The Mavs have had Dick Motta, John MacLeod, Avery Johnson and Don Nelson. The Mavericks have only been around since 1980 and Motta was their first head coach.
Motta was not one of the best coaches since he had a career NBA Coaching record of 935-1017. He did, however, coach the Mavs to their first division title in 1987.
He was let go the next year which gave coach MacLeod to work with. He took the team to their first Western Conference Finals appearance in 1988, but lost to the Los Angeles Lakers in 7 games. Getting the Mavs that far in their first decade of existence may help him be consider one of the team’s great coaches.
Then there was Johnson, who coached the team to their first NBA Finals appearance in 2006 which they lost to the Miami Heat. However, after that Finals year the Mavs kept losing in the 1st and 2nd round of the post-season which caused owner, Mark Cuban, to fire him.
The person before Johnson is consider one of the greatest coach of all time and that’s Nelson. He coached the team from 1997-2005. He is responsible for developing Nowitzki, Steve Nash and Michael Finley. Although, the furthest he coach the Mavs to was the Western Conference Finals in 2003 he did leave with a high winning record with 339 wins and 251 loses.
Then that leaves Carlisle a man who took over for Johnson in 2008. It took him only three seasons to take the Mavericks to their first championship victory. Although, last season was a lockout year he was still able to manage the lopsided team to a playoff berth.
Again, I know it’s only five games into the new NBA season, but this Mavericks team has been winning convincingly. In these four wins not once have they had a full roster to work with. Kaman was out in their first two games, Brand was out in Wednesday night’s game and Marion was also out in the same game. He will also be out for the next 2-3 games and if the Mavs win those then there is no doubt that Carlisle is responsible for it.
Carlisle knows that he will soon be without Nowitzki in a few years and he is coaching the new guys early and fast too. The way he is coaching these new group of guys will be the main reason why the Mavs end up being one of the top 4 teams in the West as they have been in the past decade.
I believe that coach Carlisle will be the main reason for the Mavs success this year if they do indeed end up in the post-season in April. Remember, back in 2011 the Mavs were not the favorites in winning anything. Then that “lightning in a bottle” struck them and they took advantage to win that 2011 NBA Championship. The same thing could happen again this season. Anything can happen in a long NBA season.