Washington Wizards Head Coach Scott Brooks Favored To Be First NBA Coach Fired
As the 2019-20 NBA season begins, BetOnline.ag has posted the odds on which head coach is going to get fired first. Last season, guys like Fred Hoiberg (December) and Tom Thibodeau (January) were fired. Eventually, coaches like Luke Walton and J.B. Bickerstaff were canned too.
Is Brooks the best bet here or is there value elsewhere on the board?
FIRST NBA HEAD COACH TO BE FIRED
SCOTT BROOKS +225
BILLY DONOVAN +300
MIKE D’ANTONI +400
BRETT BROWN +700
JIM BOYLEN +800
FRANK VOGEL +1200
DWANE CASEY +1400
BROOKS IS FAVORED TO GET FIRST PINK SLIP
It’s no surprise that Brooks is among the head coaches on the hot seat. He led the team to a division title in his first season but the Wizards have struggled ever since. They bottomed out last season with a record of 32-50, which placed them among the worst teams in the Eastern Conference.
A big issue has been the loss of All-Star John Wall, who has played a total of 73 games the last two seasons. He’s expected to miss the entire 2019-20 season, which means the Wizards aren’t likely to contend. However, I like Brooks to hang onto this job as he actually has a decent cast of young players.
Rui Hachimura was the team’s lottery pick this season and he’ll be joined by other promising young players like Troy Brown, Thomas Bryant, Admiral Schofield and Moritz Wagner. The team also picked up some decent veterans like Isaiah Thomas and C.J. Miles. By no means is this a great team but if Brooks can make them competitive and if he can develop some of the youngsters, he’ll keep his job through the year.
HEAD COACHES OF CONTENDERS ARE AMONG FAVORITES
While Billy Donovan is second in line to get fired (+300), what’s interesting to note is that a number of head coaches of NBA Championship contenders are next in line. That includes Mike D’Antonio of the Houston Rockets (+400), Brett Brown of the Philadelphia 76ers (+700) and Frank Vogel of the Los Angeles Lakers (+1200). Each of those teams are among the Top 5 in terms of odds to win the NBA Championship yet their head coaches are also among the Top 6 most likely to be fired first.
It’s not overly surprising as we know that Brown was on the hot seat in the playoffs last season and the Lakers are always quick on the trigger if they struggle. That’s why they’re on the board here as if either team is below .500 at the end of November, they could lose their jobs.
VALUE WITH BOYLEN?
The best bet on the board might be Chicago Bulls head coach Jim Boylen (+800). While management seems to like him, he tends to ride the players very hard and rumors have been that the roster is not fond of him. Speaking of the roster, it’s a big mish-mash of potential with very little proven players. Zach LaVine is an explosive scorer but it’s unclear if he can lead a young team like this. Lauri Markkanen has a lot of promise, as does Wendell Carter Jr. and Kris Dunn, but how does it all fit together? There is some depth with first-round pick Coby White, Tomas Satoransky and Thaddeus Young, but is this team good enough to win games consistently? Do they know their roles and are they going to develop or remain inconsistent?
This team went 17-41 under Boylen, finishing the year with just three wins – over Phoenix and Washington – in their last 16 games. If this continues to start the new campaign, Boylen will be canned quickly.
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