Let’s give a nod to the teachers. The ones who put us in positions to win, and sometimes put us in our place. Because today, one of the game’s best teachers took home some recognition that was long overdue.

George Karl won NBA Coach of the Year in his 25th year as a head coach, after leading the Nuggets to 57 wins and the third seed out west. Danilo Gallinari’s injury hurt them in the playoffs, but this was an incredible turnaround for a team supposedly gutted by the loss of Carmelo Anthony. This franchise never missed a beat, and Karl’s to thank.

They say you need a superstar to succeed in the League, and maybe to win a title that’s true (although the ’04 Pistons would disagree). But any streetballer knows when the star isn’t around to call the shots, sometimes everybody starts fighting to be top dog. The Nuggs haven’t had that star for two years, but they play hard for their coach. He’s not hard on them, but you can tell they got respect for him. They play hard for him. They’re a team. That’s on Karl