Raptors' Nick Nurse has been named the NBA’s Coach of the Year

Aug 24 2020, 5:45 pm

Nick Nurse, coach of current NBA champions the Toronto Raptors, has just been given the league’s Coach of the Year award.

According to a release, Nurse is being given the award for the 2019-20 season after leading the Raptors to a 53-19 record during the regular season — the second-best in the NBA. He also managed to set a franchise record with a .736 winning percentage.

“When you see Nick on the sidelines, that’s who he is as a person. Relaxed, but so hard-working. Creative and dynamic. Always setting the tone for our team – attacking our next championship, rather than defending our last,” Raptors President Masai Ujiri said in the release. “That is who Nick is, that is why we believe in him. His journey to this tremendous honor has been a long one – we are so happy to see him recognized this way.”

The Raps showed some love on their Twitter for the leader, listing his accomplishments as 2019 NBA Champion, rockstar/meme god, and 2020 NBA Coach of the Year.

Nurse’s career has been more storied than that though, with this season alone scoring 15 straight victories at the start of 2020, earning Eastern Conference Coach of the Month honors twice, and coaching Team Giannis at the NBA All-Star Game in Chicago.

The Raptors finished the regular season leading the NBA in both points allowed (106.5 ppg) and opponent three-point field goal percentage (.337) and ranked second in opponent field goal percentage (.428). On offense, the Raptors averaged 112.8 points, the second-most in team history, and a franchise-record 13.8 three-point field goals per game.

Nurse was named head coach of the Raptors in 2018, after five years as an assistant coach with the team.

In 2019, he became the ninth rookie head coach in league history to win an NBA Championship.

The Coach of the Year award is chosen by a global panel of sportswriters and broadcasters, based on games played from the start of the regular season through March 11 and did not include “seeding games,” which took place July 30 to August 14.

Rounding out the podium was Mike Budenholzer of the Milwaukee Bucks (the NBA’s first-place team), and Billy Donovan of the Oklahoma City Thunder, who finished second and third respectively.

Up next for the Coach of the Year Nick Nurse and his Raptors, is game one of the second round in which Canada’s team will face off against the young talent on the Boston Celtics roster. Game 1 will take place this Thursday, August 27.

Peter SmithPeter Smith

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