The Adelaide 36ers’ Joey Wright is the recipient of the Lindsay Gaze Trophy as the 2016-17 NBL Coach of the Year, announced at the NBL MVP Awards Night at Peninsula in Docklands, Melbourne.
Wright becomes just the second 36ers coach to win the Award, joining Ken Cole who was honoured in 1986.
He also becomes only the third coach to win the award three times, joining Brian Goorjian (6) and Lindsay Gaze (3). Wright previously received Coach of the Year honours in 2004 and 2007 while leading the Brisbane Bullets.
Each NBL club’s Head Coach, one Assistant Coach and the Team Captain voted on the Coach of the Year Award in a 3-2-1 format (3 votes being indicative of the most deserving). All NBL Head Coaches were eligible to receive the Award but voters were not allowed to vote for the coach of their own team.
Wright, in his fourth season as Adelaide head coach, received a total of 49 votes to win the Award.
Rounding out the top three in the voting were the Illawarra Hawks’ Rob Beveridge (35 votes) and Cairns Taipans’ Aaron Fearne (18 votes).
Having assembled one of the youngest teams in NBL history, Wright led Adelaide to a first place finish with a 17-11 record. After opening the season 3-6, the 36ers won 14 of their next 15 games, going undefeated throughout the month of December.
The 36ers posted the league’s highest scoring average (92.2 point per game) in 2016-17 and also led the NBL in offensive rating (112.9 points per 100 possessions), field goal percentage (46.7 percent) and rebounds (38.3 total rebounds per game).
The Coach of the Year Award is named after legendary NBL coach and Basketball Hall of Famer Lindsay Gaze, who guided the Melbourne Tigers to two NBL Championships over a long and celebrated career.
With home court advantage throughout the Swisse NBL Finals, Wright has Adelaide poised for an assault on the 2017 NBL Championship. The 36ers’ best-of-three semi-final series against the Illawarra Hawks tips off at 7:30pm (AEDT) on Thursday 16 February at Titanium Security Arena in Adelaide.
All-Time NBL Coach of the Year Award
1979 – Not Awarded
1980 – Barry Barnes, Nunawading Spectres
1981 – Bob Turner, Newcastle Falcons
1982 – Cal Bruton, Geelong Supercats
1983 – Robbie Cadee, Bankstown Bruins
1984 – Brian Kerle, Brisbane Bullets
1985 – Bob Turner, Canberra Cannons
1986 – Ken Cole, Adelaide 36ers
1987 – David Lindstrom, Illawarra Hawks
1988 – Bruce Palmer, North Melbourne Giants
1989 – Lindsay Gaze, Melbourne Tigers
1990 – Brian Kerle, Brisbane Bullets
1991 – Murray Arnold, Perth Wildcats
1992 – Brian Goorjian, South East Melbourne Magic
1993 – Alan Black, Illawarra Hawks
1994 – Brett Brown, North Melbourne Giants
1995 – Alan Black, Illawarra Hawks & Tom Wiseman, Newcastle Falcons
1996 – Brett Flanigan, Canberra Cannons
1997 – Lindsay Gaze, Melbourne Tigers & Brian Goorjian, South East Melbourne Magic
1998 – Brian Goorjian, South East Melbourne Magic
1999 – Lindsay Gaze, Melbourne Tigers & Brendan Joyce, Wollongong Hawks
2000 – Ian Stacker, Townsville Crocodiles
2001 – Brendan Joyce, Wollongong Hawks
2002 – Brian Goorjian, Victoria Titans
2003 – Ian Stacker, Townsville Crocodiles
2004 – Joey Wright, Brisbane Bullets
2005 – Adrian Hurley, Hunter Pirates
2006 – Alan Westover, Melbourne Tigers
2007 – Joey Wright, Brisbane Bullets
2008 – Brian Goorjian, Sydney Kings
2009 – Brian Goorjian, South Dragons
2010 – Gordie McLeod, Wollongong Hawks
2011 – Trevor Gleeson, Townsville Crocodiles
2012 – Andrej Lemanis, New Zealand Breakers
2013 – Andrej Lemanis, New Zealand Breakers
2014 – Gordie McLeod, Wollongong Hawks
2015 – Aaron Fearne, Cairns Taipans
2016 – Shawn Dennis, Townsville Crocodiles
2017 – Joey Wright, Adelaide 36ers