Isaiah Thomas jumped at the chance to defend his former coach after the other NBA coaches didn’t give Brad Stevens a single vote for Coach of the Year.
Isaiah Thomas seems to disagree with the reported decision by the National Basketball Coaches Association to vote Dwane Casey of the Toronto Raptors Coach of the Year.
Instead, Thomas feels the award should have gone to one of his former coaches, Brad Stevens of the Boston Celtics.
Casey’s Raptors finished first in the Eastern Conference this regular season after going 59-23, which was the second-best record in the league. Stevens went 55-27 with the Celtics to get second in the conference, despite dealing with multiple injuries to key players.
Stevens reportedly didn’t receive a single vote for the award, while Brett Brown of the 76ers, Mike D’Antoni of the Rockets, Nate McMillan of the Pacers, Gregg Popovich of the Spurs, Quin Snyder of the Jazz, Terry Stotts of the Trail Blazers and Doc Rivers of the Clippers reportedly made up the list of coaches outside of Casey to get some love for the award.
Thomas has a bit of a point about Stevens considering the major contributions he was able to get out of the young players on his roster in addition to how the squad was able to maximize the talent of its bench and role players while adjusting to losing key guys throughout the season.
Boston lost its major free agency addition of last offseason for the year when Gordon Hayward got injured in the first quarter of the season and the team also had to go without Kyrie Irving for 22 games and without Marcus Morris and Marcus Smart for 28 games each.
The most recognition Stevens, 41, has gotten for his coaching efforts throughout his NBA coaching career are the three Coach of the Month Awards he has won for April 2015, February 2016 and November 2017.
Since taking over as Boston’s coach in 2013, Stevens has helped the team improve its record each season and has gone 221-189 in the process.
Stevens can still take home the Red Auerbach Trophy for Coach of the Year, which is awarded based off a media vote compared to the NBCA vote that is done by the 30 NBA coaches.