The only thing the Phoenix Suns love more than winning basketball games is firing head coaches. On Monday night the team continued to feed their unconventional desires by firing Igor Kokoškov, their fourth coach in four years.
While the Suns continue to rearrange the deck chairs on the Titanic, there’s one astounding statistic to come from this:
Devin Booker is about to have his 5th new head coach in the NBA. He’s 22.
— sreekar (@sreekyshooter) April 23, 2019
Devin Booker, a 26-point-per-game guard, is now moving on to his fifth new coach since entering the NBA in 2015. Coming in on the tail-end of Jeff Hornacek’s tenure, Booker has also been coached by Earl Watson, Jay Triano and the aforementioned Kokoškov.
You might think this is fairly common, but you’d be wrong. It takes a special blend of player skill and organizational dysfunction to ensure someone is stuck in a spot for a considerable time while coaches change around them.
I randomly selected some NBA greats to see how many coaches they had in their careers, compared to Booker who will be on coach five by the time the 2019-20 season starts.
Dirk Nowitzki: 21 seasons, 3 coaches.
- Tim Duncan: 19 seasons, 1 coach.
- John Stockton: 19 seasons, 2 coaches.
Dwyane Wade: 16 seasons, 5 coaches.
- Michael Jordan: 15 seasons, 4 coaches.
- Bill Russell: 13 seasons, 2 coaches (including himself).
- Devin Booker: 4 seasons, 4 coaches.
This is the extreme, to be sure — but it still highlights just how disastrous Booker’s time with the Suns has been. LeBron James is on his seventh coach since entering the league in 2003, but the leader in the clubhouse by a mile is Jamal Crawford, who is on his 19th head coach in 19 seasons, though to be fair he’s also played on eight different teams.
Here’s hoping that Booker finally gets some stability, but as long as he’s on the Suns it seems that simply won’t happen.