George Karl remains one of the most polarizing NBA coaches of all time. He coached the Denver Nuggets for 9 seasons and had the opportunity to work with Carmelo Anthony, Ray Allen, Gary Payton, and Allen Iverson, amongst others.
Karl was known for pushing his player's buttons and criticizing them in public (something he does until this very day on social media). But despite being a capable coach, he was never able to lead his team to a championship.
Karl's biggest regret
In a recent interview with SiriusXM NBA Radio, Karl admitted that his biggest mistake was not bringing out the best in Allen and Anthony. According to Karl, he could've done a better job coaching Allen and Melo in terms of building the proper connection with them and motivating them to win a championship under his system and philosophies.
"Players come in different packages and personalities, it doesn't take a lot of motivation. The one guy I failed a little bit with, a great player, a Hall of Fame player is Ray Allen. I think Ray Allen is one of the few players that had a better career after me, but most of the players played for years under me and some had their best career seasons under me. The other guy would be Melo, I wish I would have had a better connection with Melo. We had a really good team here in Denver and maybe a better team would have put us over the top. Melo and me, the organization, everyone. Melo is a sensational player. Maybe I should have been harder on him for winning a championship rather than just being a good coach," Karl said.
Karl deserves to be in the Hall-of-Fame
The former Nuggets coach, who is expected to be inducted into the Hall-of-Fame this year, deserves praise despite his reputation and never winning a championship. Karl made it to the Playoffs 22 times with 5 different teams, including an NBA Finals trip in 1996 with the Seattle SuperSonics against Michael Jordan's Chicago Bulls.
He had a coaching record of 1175-824 and won 1 Coach Of The Year award in 2013. It's also unfortunate that his teams stumbled upon prime Jordan, Kobe Bryant, and Steph Curry, proving that the competition in his coaching career was brutal. Still, Karl's teams always ran great offenses, and despite never winning a ring, his resume is notable enough for a Hall-of-Fame career.