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History is full of the greatest. The greatest generals. The greatest athletes. The greatest coaches. They are all worthy of ranking, especially these top basketball coaches. These are the ones that made their teams shine brighter than all of the others.

Phil Jackson

Phil Jackson is an NBA coach worth praising. He was with the Chicago Bulls from 1989 to 1998 and the Los Angeles Lakers from 1999-2004 and 2005-2011. During that time, his teams hit 11 championships. Now, Phil Jackson’s name resides in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, Class of 2007.

Red Auerbach

Red Auerbach is another famous basketball coach, one who earned himself the title “Godfather of the NBA.” Auerbach was with the Boston Celtics for more than thirty years, and he helped them get to nine championships. 

Gregg Popovich

Next up on the list is Gregg Popovich, another coach nearly everyone can agree upon. He coached for the San Antonio Spurs, helping them achieve five championships. Gregg Popovich, also known as ‘Pop,’ is famous for the ways he encouraged his team to work together.

Pat Riley

Pat Riley coached for the Los Angeles Lakers, the New York Knicks, and Miami Heat. He had a talent for adapting to new styles and teams, which is why he lead his teams to five championships during his time. Pat Riley won the NBA Coach of the Year award three times (1990, 1993, and 1997).

John Kundla

John Kundla coached for the Minneapolis Lakers from 1947 to 1959, leading them to five championships over the years. While Kundla may be often forgotten by many, his legend is famous among Lakers fans.

Larry Brown

Larry Brown is famous for many things, including getting the most out of infamously bad teams. In 2000-01 he won the Coach of the Year Award (while with the 76ers) and earned his way into the Hall of Fame in 2002.

Don Nelson

Don Nelson is a man who worked with many teams over the years, including the Milwaukee Bucks, Golden State Warriors, New York Knicks, and Dallas Mavericks. Nelson is famous for his risky decisions, including pioneering new tactics over the tried and true traditional methods.