Tuesday , Apr , 24 , 2007 C.Y. Ellis

Mitchell named Coach of the Year

New York, NY (Sports Network) – Sam Mitchell, who guided the Toronto Raptors
to an NBA-best 20-game improvement this season, was named Coach of the Year on
Tuesday.

Mitchell garnered 49 first-place votes and 389 points from a panel of 128
sports writers to become the first Raptor head coach to capture the Red
Auerbach Trophy.

Utah Jazz head coach Jerry Sloan was second with 301 points (39 first-place
votes) and Dallas’ Avery Johnson was third with 268 points (28 first-place
votes). Candidates were awarded five points for each first-place vote, three
points for each second-place vote and one point for each third-place vote
received.

In his third season as the Raptors’ head coach, Mitchell led his club to its
first Atlantic Division title and a franchise-record-tying 47 wins. That gave
Toronto the third seed in the Eastern Conference and home court advantage in
the playoffs for the first time in team history.

That was a dramatic turnaround, as the Raptors went just 27-55 in 2005-06.

Mitchell played 13 seasons in the NBA before retiring in 2002. It took him
just two years as an assistant coach before being tabbed head coach of the
Raptors in June of 2004.

The Raptors finished 33-49 in his first season as head coach.

TOR