The Celtics' Doc Rivers and the Utah Jazz’s Jerry Sloan today were named the NBA Eastern and Western Conference Coaches of the Month, respectively, for March.
Rivers, who captured his second Coach of the Month award this season (October/November), guided the Celtics to an NBA-best 13-3 (.812) record in March, which included wins over the Pistons, Spurs, Rockets, Suns, and Hornets. The Celtics averaged 101.2 points on .478 shooting from the field while limiting opponents to a league-low 88.6 points on .408 shooting. Boston’s 12.6 points per game margin of victory was the league’s highest differential in March.
Sloan led Utah to a 12-4 (.750) record in the month. Six of Utah’s 12 wins came against teams that currently would be in the playoffs. The Jazz, owners of the NBA’s best home record (33-4), had their franchise-record-tying 19-game home winning streak snapped March 20, but they are still 23-1 at EnergySolutions Arena in 2008. Utah averaged 113.4 points on .527 shooting from the field in March.
Other nominees for the Coach of the Month were Charlotte’s Sam Vincent, Detroit’s Flip Saunders, Houston’s Rick Adelman, New Orleans’ Byron Scott, Philadelphia’s Maurice Cheeks, and San Antonio’s Gregg Popovich.