Terry Stotts enters his eighth season as head coach of the Portland Trail Blazers in 2019-20 after guiding his team to a 53-29 record, a sixth consecutive trip to the postseason and Portland’s first trip to the Western Conference Finals in 19 years with series wins over Oklahoma City and Denver. Last season marked the 14th 50-win season for the Trail Blazers, and the third with Stotts at the helm. A 25-year coaching veteran, Portland introduced Stotts as the franchise’s 14th head coach on August 7, 2012. Stotts is the second-winningest coach in franchise history after Jack Ramsay, and the second Trail Blazers head coach to reach the playoffs in six consecutive seasons, joining Rick Adelman.
Portland’s victory over Orlando on Nov. 28, 2018 marked the 400th career victory for Stotts, who is one of 48 coaches in NBA history to reach the 400-win mark. With the Trail Blazers’ win over New Orleans on Jan. 18, 2019, he joined Ramsay (453 wins) as the second coach in franchise history to reach 300 wins in Rip City. The fourth-longest tenured head coach in the NBA, Stotts is one of six active coaches who have won 300 games with their current team. Stotts has compiled a 345-264 (.560) record in seven seasons at the helm in Portland and has a 440-417 (.521) overall NBA coaching record.
He was named the Western Conference Coach of the Month in February of 2019 and has won a coach of the month award in each of the last six seasons, making him the only coach to win the award in six straight seasons since its inception in 1982-83. In 2017-18, Portland finished with a 49-33 record, a Northwest Division championship and a fifth consecutive trip to the playoffs as the third seed in the Western Conference and the second-youngest roster in the NBA.
With the youngest roster in the league in 2016-17, the Trail Blazers finished with an NBA-best 17-6 record over the last two months of last season to book a fourth consecutive playoff berth for the first time since 2000-03. Stotts became the third Trail Blazers coach to make the postseason in four of his first five seasons with the team, joining Jack Ramsay and Adelman.
The Trail Blazers advanced to the Western Conference Semifinals for the second time in three seasons in 2015-16 after defeating the LA Clippers in the first round, despite not returning four of five starters from the previous year and possessing the third-youngest roster in the league.
In 2014-15, Stotts guided Portland to a 51-31 record and its first outright division title since 1998-99, counting back-to-back 50-win seasons for just the fifth time in franchise history. Stotts led the Trail Blazers to a 54-win season in 2013-14, marking the largest improvement in franchise history and the sixth-best record all-time. Portland won its first playoff series in 14 seasons, defeating the Houston Rockets in six games and setting up a Western Conference Semifinal matchup with the San Antonio Spurs.
Prior to coming to Portland, Stotts served as an assistant coach with Dallas for four seasons from 2008-12. Under head coach Rick Carlisle, he helped lead the Mavericks to the 2011 NBA Championship, playoff berths in each of his four seasons and a 198-114 (.635) overall record. Stotts has twice before served as an NBA head coach, with two-year stints in both Milwaukee (2005-07) and Atlanta (2002-04). During his two seasons with Milwaukee, Stotts guided the Bucks to a 63-83 (.432) mark, including a playoff appearance in 2006. Stotts replaced Lon Kruger as head coach of the Hawks on Dec. 26, 2002 and accumulated a record of 52-85 (.380) in two seasons with Atlanta.
In between head coaching positions, Stotts worked as the lead assistant to Mike Montgomery at Golden State during the 2004-05 season.
Before becoming a head coach, Stotts served as an assistant under George Karl for 10 years, six with Seattle and four with Milwaukee. Those teams finished each season with a .500 record or better and reached the postseason in nine of 10 seasons. While in Seattle, the Sonics posted a 357-135 (.726) record, captured four Pacific Division titles, reached the Western Conference Finals twice and appeared in the 1996 NBA Finals. In four seasons as lead assistant in Milwaukee, Stotts helped the Bucks amass a 163-133 (.551) mark, highlighted by a Central Division Championship and a berth in the 2001 Eastern Conference Finals.
Stotts was selected by Houston in the second round of the 1980 NBA Draft, and played professionally in Italy and then with the CBA’s Montana Golden Nuggets, coached by Karl. He returned to Europe in 1983, playing in Spain and France before joining Karl’s coaching staff with the CBA’s Albany Patroons in 1990-91. During his first year on a professional coaching staff, he helped lead the Patroons to an all-time CBA-best 50-6 record. Stotts was an assistant coach for the CBA’s Fort Wayne Fury for one season before joining the Sonics as a scout.
A four-year starter at the University of Oklahoma, Stotts earned All Big Eight honors as a senior and was named Academic All-America in each of his final two collegiate seasons. He was named Oklahoma’s outstanding senior student-athlete and was one of three individuals chosen nationally to receive an NCAA Post-Graduate Scholarship. He earned a BS in Zoology and, in 1988, earned an MBA from his alma mater. Born in Cedar Falls, Iowa, Stotts grew up in Iowa, Illinois, Wisconsin, Guam and finished high school in Bloomington, Indiana. Stotts and his wife, Jan, have two Coton de Tulear dogs, Bisou and Baci.