Quantcast 2010 Miami Heat Basketball: Miami Heat Coaching


Miami Heat - Spoelstra or Riley?



Pat Riley: 5 NBA Championships as head coach, 1 NBA Championship as assistant coach, 3 times NBA Coach of the Year award, and inducted into the NBA Hall of Fame as a coach in 2008.

Erik Spoelstra: Twice lost in first round of the playoffs.

Pat Riley is one of the greatest NBA coaches in history, yet he will not be the head coach of the Miami Heat for this upcoming season. Instead, it will be his previous assistant; Erik Spoelstra. It is clear to see Spoelstra has achieved very little as an NBA head coach in his two-year career, but the 39 year old is still very inexperienced. These past two seasons he has been in charge of two very average Heat teams, yet he has managed to make the playoffs with winning records both years. Though Spoelstra has had plenty of time to learn, he has been involved with the Heat organisation since he was 25 years old after being appointed by the franchise in 1995. He has built his way up the Heat ladder, all the way from being the assistant coach/video coordinator to the head coach position. Pat Riley has describes him as somebody who is “born to coach” and Riley clearly has huge confidence in the young coach from Illinois. However, this confidence does not seem to be shared by many other people in the basketball world; some people question whether he has the coaching ability to handle the all-star team which has been established in Miami. Not only is Spoelstra expected to dominate the Eastern conference with the Heat, but anything short of a championship will surely been seen as a disappointment. This is a huge ask of a 39 year old coach.

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On the contrary, Pat Riley would seem like an ideal head coach for the Miami Heat. This Miami Heat roster is going to need a lot of disciplining and direction from a very respectable coach; Riley would demand, and receive, the utmost respect from any player. After all he has won 5 NBA championships; more than the entire Heat roster combined has. However, for the time being Riley remains as team president and Spoelstra remains as head coach.

Nevertheless, rumours continue to speculate about the head coach role at the Heat. Whilst Riley has the credentials, experience, and coaching ability to probably take the franchise to numerous NBA titles, Spoelstra still has the most important thing of all; the role as head coach. Therefore, Spoelstra will be calling the shots for the time being and Riley will be watching over as the president. But watch this space, because if things don’t go completely to plan for Miami early; then a return to coaching for the great Pat Riley might be immanent.



By George Bowes
Pro Basketball Fans Miami Heat Correspondent

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