The Houston Rockets coaching position couldn’t have been in worse shape entering the 2016-17. Veteran Kevin McHale was fired early last year and rookie coach J. B. Bickerstaff took a back seat to the over-bearing personalities of James Harden and Dwight Howard.
Enter 12-year veteran head coach Mike D'Antoni. D’Antoni built a coaching staff that helped shape the Rockets and unlocked James Harden’s game at the point guard postion. The Rockets thrived under D’Antoni, finishing with 55 wins in the 2016-17 season, 14 games better than last season.
D'Antoni was rewarded Monday night with the 2017 NBA Coach of the Year Award, his second Coach of the Year award (2005, Suns).
D’Antoni is the eighth coach in NBA history to win multiple Coach of the Year honors, joining Gregg Popovich as the only active coach with multiple honors.
The record of 55-27 was the fourth-most wins in franchise history. The Rockets set an NBA record for three-pointers made in a single season under D'Antoni with 1,181.
D’Antoni is looking good with the award: