Who do you think will be crowned the NBA's Coach of the Year for the 2018-19 season?
Scott Rafferty (@crabdribbles): This is Brad Stevens' award to lose.
Already considered one of the best coaches in the NBA, Stevens is in a position to lead the Boston Celtics to the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference this season and establish them as legitimate title contenders. There's no doubt that the Celtics have the star power and depth to do it with the likes of Kyrie Irving, Jayson Tatum, Gordon Hayward, Al Horford and Jaylen Brown. It's just up to Stevens to put it all together - and there's no reason to believe he won't.
Gilbert McGregor (@GMcGregor21): My vote goes to Mike Budenholzer.
Much of what goes into winning Coach of the Year is based on expectations and how well a team meets - or exceeds - them, and Milwaukee is a team on the fringe of being very special. While they are projected to finish fourth in the East with fewer than 47 wins, Budenholzer's coaching should get the Bucks over 50 wins.
Milwaukee has surrounded superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo with excellent complementary pieces and it is Budenholzer's new system that will allow Giannis to make even more strides as a player. Coach Bud will reach the team's complementary pieces in a manner similar to the way in which he brought the best out of the 2014-15 Hawks, winning 60 games and Coach of the Year in the process.
Kyle Irving (@KyleIrv_): The Coach of the Year will be Brad Stevens.
It's tough to live up to the expectations that the Celtics have this season, but Stevens will make it happen. He has one of the most talented rosters in the league and he already has complete trust from his players. Multiple guys have already stated that they don't care if they start or come off the bench, they just care about winning. That starts with the head coach's mentality and trickles down, and it shows that they know he'll put them in the best position to win.
It's going to be tough to deny Stevens the award when Boston wins close to 60 games and takes the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference. Like Scott said above, it's his award to lose and this will be the year he's finally rewarded for his greatness.
Carlan Gay (@TheCarlanGay): Quin Snyder will have the Jazz in the top four in the Western Conference this season and he'll earn the award.
Snyder has a team that's bought into his system and ready to prove that last season's 18-6 post All-Star record wasn't a fluke. The talent is there, they're great defensively and they're always tough to beat playing at home in Utah.
All three finalists (Snyder, Dwane Casey, Brad Stevens) last year could've made a valid case as to why they should be awarded the honour. Lock Snyder in as the only candidate who will have a case by the season's end.
Manuel de la Torre (@manueltorresanz): Although he's in the shadow, Brad Stevens is the real star of the Boston Celtics.
The team has improved every single year since he took charge of the bench, to the point where the Celtics came within a game of making the NBA Finals last season despite not having Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward. But what's more important, Stevens always gets the best out of his players - just look at Evan Turner, Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder etc. He understands what they need to know and hear, so his message digs deep with his guys.
Furthermore, his incredible basketball mind creates plays and situations that decide games.
The Celtics will be the best team in the East this season and will likely fight for a ring. And that will be because of Brad Stevens.