NBA News: Odds Say Stotts, Bjorkgren Likely Won’t Return Next Season

As the 2020-21 NBA season begins to wrap up, some fans and experts are already thinking of the offseason. After all, it gives each team the chance to improve their organization, whether that’s in terms of players or coaching staff.

Each season, some teams will underperform and that leads to speculation as to which coaches will get to keep their jobs and which will be fired. Well, considering the 2020-21 campaign is nearly finished, it’s not surprising to know that some have already begun thinking about which coaches could get the axe. In fact, BetOnline has actually released odds for various coaches and their chances of continuing on with their respective jobs.

Two of the NBA coaches that BetOnline is looking at are Terry Stotts of the Portland Trail Blazers and Nate Bjorkgren of the Indiana Pacers. Both men have been in the news about their job security this season, so it makes sense that they’d be two of the bench bosses involved in this betting market.

NBA Odds: Will Terry Stotts Coach the Trail Blazers Next Season?

Odds via BetOnline as of Tuesday, May 11

  • No (-250)
  • Yes (+170)

While they haven’t clinched an NBA playoff spot as of May 11, the Trail Blazers currently have a 40-29 record and hold the No. 6 seed in the Western Conference. Considering the above, you might wonder why Stotts probably won’t be Portland’s coach next season.

Well, it’s for several reasons. For starters, Stotts has coached the Trail Blazers for the last since the 2012-13 NBA season and doesn’t have much to show for it. The furthest his team made it was to the Western Conference final in 2019, but they were swept by the Golden State Warriors. Aside from that, Portland hasn’t won more than five playoff games in a postseason under Stotts. When you have one of the top-5 point guards in the league on your roster in the form of Damian Lillard for that long, you need to have the results to back it up.

The Trail Blazers have also lacked defense under Stotts. The team is giving up 114.5 points per game (22nd) while also giving up the 10th-most rebounds per game (53.4). Opponents are shooting 47.5% from the field against Portland (T-5th), which also makes it hard to win games. At the end of the day, it’s hard imagining Stotts keeping his NBA gig in Portland unless his team makes it to the conference finals or beyond.

Will Nate Bjorkgren Coach the Pacers Next Season?

Odds via BetOnline as of Tuesday, May 11

  • No (-175)
  • Yes (+135)

Before Nate Bjorkgren became head coach of the Pacers, he spent four seasons as an assistant around the league. Now, he’s already on the hot seat just one season into his tenure. After five straight seasons of at least 42 wins, the Pacers currently have a 32-36 record and are fighting for the last playoff spot in the East. When you have a team that has a roster of players like Domantas Sabonis, Malcolm Brogdon and T.J. Warren, you shouldn’t be that far down the NBA standings. Yes, injuries have played a role, but it’s Bjorkgren’s duty to adjust and he just didn’t make the effort.

There are also rumors that Bjorkgren has relationship issues with “key players” in the Pacers’ locker room, according to NBA insider Adrian Wojnarowski.

If the Pacers fail to make the playoffs and he’s lost the locker room already, Bjorkgren’s hiring could be one of the more costly mistakes in Pacers history. It would mean that the organization essentially wasted one of the prime years of their core and will have to bounce back next season.

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Devon Platana
After graduating with a Masters degree in Journalism, Devon joined USGS to improve his sports writing skills. As a lifelong sports fan, one of Devon’s favorite things to do is analyze statistics across all sports.