The NBA today announced the Coaches of the Month of January.
Toronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse was named Eastern Conference Coach of the Month while Memphis Grizzlies head coach Taylor Jenkins earned the honour in the Western Conference.
For Nurse, it is the second time this season and the third time in his two-year head coaching career that he has earned Coach of the Month honours. He previously earned the honour for games played in Oct./Nov. 2018 and in Oct./Nov. 2019.
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This past month, Nurse led the Raptors to a 12-3 (.800) record including a 10-game win streak to close the month. Despite dealing with various injuries to key players throughout the first 50 games of the season, Toronto is second in the Eastern Conference with a 36-14 record, meaning Nurse will be the head coach of Team Giannis in the 2020 NBA All-Star Game.
After opening February with a dominant win over the Chicago Bulls, Nurse's Raptors have now won 11 in a row and take the floor five more times before the All-Star break. They'll look to strengthen their hold on the East's second seed by continuing their strong play.
This is the first time rookie head coach Taylor Jenkins has earned Coach of the Month honours, as he led the upstart Memphis Grizzlies to an 11-4 (.733) record in January, including a seven-game win streak from Jan. 4-17.
Jenkins, 35, is the second-youngest coach in the NBA this season (Ryan Saunders, 33) and is the youngest coach to earn this honour since Lawrence Frank did so in April 2005.
After winning just 33 games in the 2018-19 season, the Grizzlies finished the month of January with a 24-25 record and maintain a 1.5 game lead for the Western Conference's eighth seed.
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Entering the season, many models had the Grizzlies projected to finish last in the Western Conference.
Ahead of the All-Star break, the Grizzlies take the floor five times, with big tests coming against the Mavericks, 76ers and Trail Blazers, who are also in contention for the West's final playoff spot.