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George Karl named 2012-13 NBA Coach of the Year

Nuggets coach receives Red Auerbach Trophy for first time in career

Nuggets coach George Karl led Denver to a team-record 57 wins, including a 38-3 mark at Pepsi Center.
Garrett Ellwood/NBAE/Getty Images

DENVER, May 8, 2013 – After leading the Denver Nuggets to a team-record 57 wins, George Karl is the recipient of the Red Auerbach Trophy as the 2012-13 NBA Coach of the Year, the league announced today.

Karl, who guided the Nuggets to the No. 3 seed in the Western Conference, joins Doug Moe as the only coaches in franchise history to win the award. It also is the first time Karl has received the honor in his 25 NBA seasons.

Karl totaled 404 points, including 62 first-place votes, from a panel of 121 sportswriters and broadcasters throughout the United States and Canada. Coaches were awarded five points for each first-place vote, three points for each second-place vote and one point for each third-place vote. The award was tabulated by the independent accounting firm of Ernst & Young LLP.

“I am honored and energized to represent coaching and be their ambassador as coach of the year and continue to symbolize the great coaching there is in the NBA,” Karl said. “There are probably seven or eight guys who are deserving of it and another 10 or 15 other coaches who have done a great job and aren’t getting any recognition.”

Working with the third-youngest roster in the NBA, Karl helped the Nuggets reach the playoffs for the 10th consecutive year. Denver won a team-record 38 home games, including 23 straight to end the regular season – also a team record.

The Nuggets set a franchise record by winning 15 straight games from Feb. 23 to March 23 and went 24-4 after the All-Star break. They led the league in scoring, offensive rebounds, fast-break points, points off turnovers and points in the paint.

Karl reached two milestones in a four-day span in January. He won his 1,099th career game on Jan. 20, beating the Oklahoma City Thunder to pass Larry Brown for sixth place on the NBA career wins list. On Jan. 23, Karl celebrated his 1,100th victory when Denver beat the Houston Rockets.

The Nuggets finished 12-4 in January as Karl was named Western Conference Coach of the Month. He received the honor again in March after Denver went 13-2 – matching the best month in team history.

Since being hired by the Nuggets on Jan. 27, 2005, Karl has compiled a 423-257 record. He trails only Moe (432) on the franchise victory list and his .622 winning percentage is unmatched.

Overall, Karl has a 1,131-756 record with the Nuggets, Milwaukee Bucks, Seattle SuperSonics, Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers.

He has compiled 21 consecutive non-losing seasons (the Bucks went 41-41 in 2001-02), matching Phil Jackson for the longest such streak in NBA history.

The Coach of the Year Award is named after legendary coach and Hall of Famer Red Auerbach, who guided the Celtics to nine NBA Championships. In 1996, Auerbach was honored as one of the Top 10 Coaches in NBA History as the NBA celebrated its 50th anniversary.

Karl will receive the award during a press conference at Pepsi Center today at 11:30 a.m. MT. The press conference will be broadcast live on Altitude Sports & Entertainment.