NBA 2023: Candidates for Coach of the Year

The NBA is in full swing, and with it comes some great storylines. Most recently, LeBron James broke the record for most points scored in an NBA career. This milestone was celebrated in the middle of a game as the clock stopped and the crowd cheered while LeBron was overjoyed and spoke to reporters regarding the landmark accomplishment.

Now that we’ve crossed that bridge and LeBron is continuing to shine, it’s time to start thinking about the Coach of the Year award, which will surely be hotly contested this year as a number of coaches have stepped up their game.

Here are five coaches who could be in contention for the award this year:

Joe Mazzulla

Joe Mazzulla is having an outstanding season with the Boston Celtics. He’s a young coach at only 35 but has already earned the respect of his contemporaries with his success. He’s been coaching as an assistant for the Celtics since 2019 and has since helped them to improve as a team. In February, he was named the head coach and has since had an impressive run.

He previously worked under Doc Rivers at the Clippers, so he can draw on the experience of being around one of the best coaches in basketball history. Doc is, of course, on our list as well.

However, Joe Mazzulla is considered to be the betting favorite for the Coach of the Year award at the moment. For gamblers who haven’t used a sportsbook yet, or who would like to take advantage of various offers, it might be a good idea to use a free bet sportsbook to place a wager on the Coach of the Year award this year.

That way, you stand to make a profit if you choose correctly. And with a free bet, there’s no real loss at stake on that wager. It’s a win-win situation.

Mike Brown

Mike Brown is the current coach of the Sacramento Kings. Brown used to coach the Cavs and the Lakers and he was an assistant coach for the Warriors. Outside of the NBA, he coaches the Nigerian national basketball team.

In May of 2022, he was given the head coaching job of the Kings, after the Warriors won the 2021-2022 season championship. While he was no Patrick Ewing in his career as a player, he has a long coaching history full of success. Brown has already had a great start to 2023 and he looks like a likely candidate for consideration for the Coach of the Year award.

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, head coach of the Denver Nuggets, also previously coached the Kings.  He’s been the HC of the Nuggets since 2015 and has been on an impressive run recently.

In 2018-2019, he brought the Nuggets to the 2nd seed of the Western Conference, with a record of 54-28. This season, he is expected to have solid success as well and he is one of the top candidates going into the Coach of the Year candidate list for many predictions.

Taylor Jenkins

Taylor Jenkins is the head coach of the Memphis Grizzlies. Last season, he led the Grizzlies to a 1st place finish in the Southwest, with a .683 record. Having improved with winning percentage linearly in the past three seasons, this season there is a lot of buzz around this coach, who appears to be poised to make another strong finish.

Doc Rivers

Doc Rivers is currently the HC for the Philadelphia 76ers. He’s widely considered to be one of the best coaches in the NBA right now and he has an extremely impressive background.

Rivers is one of only two coaches who have won at least one championship in each of their first five seasons as an NBA head coach (Mike Brown is the other). He also holds career coaching records of 461-343 (.556) with a 2-1 record in playoff series, and he was named Coach of the Year twice during his tenure with Boston.

Now, with the 76ers, he’s making a strong push and will definitely be a name mentioned at the end of the year when it’s time to choose a winner for the Coach of the Year award.


It’s going to be pretty close, but the three most likely candidates are Mazzulla, Brown, and Malone. We’ve seen strong progress from these coaches, and they’re certainly not going unnoticed by fans. In fact, one of them will likely get the recognition they deserve in the form of the Coach of the Year award.