Coach George Karl has transformed the Denver Nuggets into a team that is no stranger to the NBA postseason. Without him there is no way the Nuggets would be sitting in third with eight games to go in the regular season. What’s more remarkable is the fact that he has done so without an All Star player.
Coach Karl was named Western Conference Coach of the Month for March. The team matched its best month ever going 13-2 and tied a franchise winning streak record on March 23 for 15 in a row. The Nuggets beat some of the league’s best teams at home in the month, including the Oklahoma City Thunder, Atlanta Hawks, Los Angeles Clippers, New York Knicks, Memphis Grizzlies and Brooklyn Nets.
He has won the Coach of the Month award 12 times, this is the fifth time in Denver. January was also Karl’s month and his team continues to play well without their leader on the floor, Ty Lawson. Others have stepped up in his absence, but even Karl would probably prefer Lawson to be the one with the ball if the Nuggets need a basket.
Coach Karl has 1,124 career victories, the sixth most in NBA history. His 416 wins with the Nuggets is only 16 behind Doug Moe‘s franchise record. The Nuggets continue to be competitive even without superstar Carmelo Anthony and his fast-break techniques have been successful no matter who’s in the rotation.
The Nuggets are currently in the middle of a four day break and their next game isn’t until Wednesday away at the Utah Jazz. Karl will need to prove his coaching prowess and hopefully the team comes out of the gate ready to play. Four days off can be a blessing or a curse and if Lawson’s injury turns out to be severe, Karl will have to rally the troops to keep playing fast and aggressive.
The Nuggets and Karl have shown they can get to the playoffs continually. However, getting out of the first round hasn’t been so continuous. This year might be different though. If the Nuggets can get home-court advantage and if Lawson is healthy, they might have a nice little playoff run.