The San Antonio Spurs are off to their best start ever this season, with easily the best record in the NBA. Their win over the Golden State Warriors Monday night gave the Spurs an eye-popping 38-7 record, and locked in Gregg Popovich as the head coach of the Western Conference in the 2010 All-Star game, to be held on Sunday, Feb. 20 in Los Angeles. It is the second All-Star coaching nod for the coach affectionately known as Pop.
NBA All-Star coaches are determined by best record in each conference two weeks prior to the game. A coach can't coach an All-Star team two years in a row, otherwise known as "the Pat Riley rule," as the Lakers dominated the Western Conference in the 1980s. The worst record San Antonio could have through Feb. 6 is 38-12, which is better than 38-13, the best possible record of the Lakers, currently second in the west at 32-13.
Last season, the Lakers and Cavaliers had the best records in each conference on January 31, but both Phil Jackson and Mike Brown coached the All-Star Game in the previous year. Head coaching duties fell to George Karl and Stan Van Gundy. This season, the Celtics lead the Eastern Conference with a 33-10 record, with a comfortable lead over Miami (31-13) and Chicago (30-14). Celtics' head coach led the East to a 134-128 win in the 2008 All-Star Game.