Lenny Wilkens – One Of The Greatest Coaches In NBA History

Photo: USA TODAY Sports

Lenny Wilkens – One Of The Greatest Coaches In NBA History


Lenny Wilkens is widely regarded as one of the greatest coaches in the history of the NBA. He had a long and successful career as a player and a coach, and his impact on the league was significant.

As a player, Wilkens was a nine-time NBA All-Star and a member of the 1968 championship-winning team, the Boston Celtics. He was known for his excellent ball handling skills and his ability to score, but it was his leadership and court vision that made him a standout player.

After retiring as a player, Wilkens began his coaching career. He took over as head coach of the Portland Trail Blazers in 1969 and led the team to the NBA Finals in his first season. From there, Wilkens went on to coach several other teams, including the Seattle SuperSonics, Cleveland Cavaliers, and Atlanta Hawks.

Throughout his coaching career, Wilkens emphasized the importance of team play and defense. He was known for his ability to get the best out of his players and for his ability to adapt his coaching style to fit the needs of his team.

Wilkens also made history as the first coach to lead teams to the NBA Finals from both the Western and Eastern Conferences. He won the NBA Coach of the Year award twice and was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame as a coach in 1998.

In addition to his success on the court, Wilkens also made an impact off the court. He was a pioneer in the use of sports psychology and was known for his commitment to giving back to the community.

Overall, Lenny Wilkens had a significant impact on the NBA as a coach. His leadership, strategic thinking, and dedication to teamwork and defense helped him achieve success at the highest level and earned him a place among the greatest coaches in the history of the league.


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