NBA Playoffs: Top 10 Head Coaching Mismatches in NBA Playoff History

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NBA Playoffs: Top 10 Head Coaching Mismatches in NBA Playoff History
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

The Los Angeles Clippers went from winning the biggest playoff series in team history to being completely dominated by the San Antonio Spurs in the NBA Western Conference Semifinals.

The Spurs dominance in this series may very well have come down to having future Hall of Fame head coach in Gregg Popovich. The Clippers are coached by...Vinny Del Negro? The question mark is because many people believe Del Negro should not be an NBA head coach.

Before the series, analysts made a point of proclaiming Popovich versus Del Negro a legitimate mismatch in San Antonio's favor. This appeared to be true throughout the series. Popovich made the correct decisions throughout the series. Whether it was making adjustments necessary to come from behind in Game 3 or forcing the Clippers into matchups that heavily benefited the Spurs with his late game hack-a-Reggie Evans strategy, Popovich was aways one step ahead of Del Negro.

Popovich versus Del Negro is the most recent example of what have been numerous lopsided coaching matchups in NBA playoff history. Although Popovich has been involved in a few mismatches, this particular matchup against Del Negro is not one of the 10 most lopsided.

It should be noted that, Popovich, along with Phil Jackson, Red Auerbach, Pat Riley and John Kundla have been the head coaches for 34 of the 63 NBA championship teams. It should come as no surprise that these five coaches dominate the list of playoff coaching mismatches.

Here is a look at the 10 greatest coaching mismatches in NBA playoff history.

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