Erik Spoelstra has his 700th career win, one of only four coaches for a franchise.
Another milestone for the future Hall of Fame coach.
Last night was the Miami Heat’s biggest win of the season. After going 0-2 against the New York Knicks in the first 2 meetings between the teams this year, Miami got revenge at home and pulled out a huge victory. It wasn’t just a big game in terms of playoff seeding, it was also a historic night for longtime Heat coach Erik Spoelstra. He earned his 700th career victory, one of only four coaches in NBA history to do so with a single franchise. Do the same at home with Dwyane Wade, who was sitting courtside yesterday afternoon.
Spoelstra’s greatness should not go unnoticed. In this day and age of the NBA it’s becoming rarer and rarer to see coaches stay long-term. The fact that he has been at the helm of this Heat team since 2008 only shows the longevity and stability of the franchise’s front office and staff, not to mention Spoelstra himself. Pat Riley put his faith in a young Spoelstra shortly after winning a world championship in 2006.
Those are some big shoes to fill, knowing you’re a new coach thrust into the mix of a winning culture at a professional sports team. Spock accepted the challenge and fared better than anyone expected. Everything has really gone wrong with this franchise.
From the very early years of Dwyane Wade, to the Big Three era, to “primary father” Wade, and now to the Jimmy Butler era. Not to mention Goran Dragic and Hassan Whiteside in the middle managed to turn a team into a playoff contender.
It is very impressive to know that with Spoelstra as coach, there has never been a “tanking” season. No matter what players he had to use and the many roster changes, he has kept this team competitive and fighting for a playoff spot each season with a winning habit and strong culture.
All that being said, he took on arguably one of the biggest challenges any NBA coach could face. In his fourth year, LeBron James and Chris Bosh decided to join Dwyane Wade and company. South Beach to form a dominant super team in a talented Eastern Conference.
It didn’t start well from the start. In fact, the first year the big three met the Miami Heat struggled out of the gate to start the season with a 9-8 record. Discussions and rumors spread that maybe Pat Riley should be in charge of coaching the team. Spoelstra never let outside noise get to him. That “must see TV” basketball team stayed the course and found its way to the NBA Finals in the same season.
The Heat went on 4 consecutive Finals appearances during that time, and won 2 championships during that stretch, including in 2012 and 2013. return to the Finals with Jimmy Butler in 2020 6 years after the franchise’s last Finals appearance.
Spo played with 5 NBA Finals teams and another Conference Finals team last year, all with the Miami Heat.
His resume speaks for itself, and the fact that this man has zero Coach of the Year awards is unbelievable. Regardless of the hardware, Spoelstra has long been considered one of the top coaches in the league, and it doesn’t look like he’s going anywhere.
To everyone Heat Nation, be blessed to have a coach of Spo’s caliber on this team. We all look forward to more victories in Miami in the years to come.