Gentry gets no respect in Coach of the Year voting
Unfortunately for Alvin Gentry, Scott Brooks didn't have a vote.
And unfortunately for Alvin Gentry, the 119 sportswriters and broadcasters that do apparently didn't pay too much attention to what the Suns were able to do with a roster featuring two aging stars and a big group of role players.
San Antonio's Gregg Popovich won the award, garnering 77 first place votes to beat out Chicago's Tom Thibodeau and Indiana's Frank Vogel.
But if you keep moving down the Coach of the Year balloting results, and I mean all the way down, you'll find Gentry, who received just one third-place vote.
Should Gentry have won the award? No. But keeping a Suns team in postseason contention until the second-to-last game of the season is an accomplishment that deserves recognition.
Two of the recurring plot lines with the 2011-12 Suns were the lack of talent on the roster and the absence of a proven go-to scorer.
In fact, all season long, the Suns had only two players who eclipsed the 30-point barrier in a single game -- Steve Nash and Shannon Brown. To put that in perspective, the league's leading scorer, Kevin Durant, hit that mark 25 times.
The Suns got off to a less-than-stellar 14-20 start, but went 19-13 after the All-Star break, fighting their way back into postseason contention in the process.
A lot of credit goes to the players, but more goes to the coaching staff for keeping this challenged roster invested enough to play hard through the entirety of the schedule. That's not a common occurrence in today's NBA. Don't believe me? Look at Portland, Charlotte and Golden State, who all pulled off epic tank jobs down the stretch (or in Charlotte's case, all season).
Gentry kept his players engaged and competitive throughout a second-straight fruitless season. And yet, it went virtually unnoticed by everyone - except for Scott Brooks and one lone Coach of the Year voter.
And that is a shame.
- Jared Dudley, Suns forward - Tuesday June 18Jared Dudley joins Doug and Wolf to talk NBA Finals.
- Jared Dudley, Suns' Forward - Tuesday June 11JD gives us his player's perspective on the NBA Finals.
- Brian Windhorst, NBA ESPN.com Writer - Friday June 7Brian Windhorst talks about Game 1 of the NBA Finals and what to expect from the rest of the series.
- Suns GM Ryan McDonough - Friday June 7The Suns GM talks about prospects Ben McLemore of Kansas and Victor Oladipo of Indiana.
- Eddie Johnson, Suns' TV Analyst - Thursday June 6EJ previews game 1 of the NBA Finals. Plus, what are his thoughts on George Karl's firing?