Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Spor
Mike D'Antoni of the Los Angeles Lakers
Just as is the case with any and all questions about NBA coaches weathering the injury-related storms, there are no definitive answers.
When a team like the Oklahoma City Thunder struggles, even without the services of an All-Star, it's largely on the coach. The same goes for talent-laden squads like the Golden State Warriors or Atlanta Hawks—compared to the rest of the Eastern Conference, they have a lot of talent.
But it's not the case with one like the Los Angeles Lakers.
Do you really want to pin the team's struggles on Mike D'Antoni? If you do, you haven't been paying enough attention.
Because MDA has an established system, one that revolves around uptempo offense, lots of ball movement and plenty of three-point shooting, even if it comes at the expense of defense, every role player has thrived.
Nick Young looks like the favorite for Sixth Man of the Year, Jodie Meeks and Xavier Henry are playing fairly well, and Kendall Marshall has even made a successful jump from D-League journeyman to bona fide NBA starter.
In this case, the blame rests with Lady Luck.
Could any coach survive injuries to Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash, Jordan Farmar and Steve Blake? After all, the accumulation of those woes left the Lake Show without a single healthy point guard, prior to the acquisition of a certain southpaw from North Carolina.
Another coach who deserves to be free from too much blame is Mike Woodson of the New York Knicks.
Well, kind of.
You can yell at Woodson all you want for failing to properly manage his rotations and instill discipline within his ranks, but he couldn't do too much to help out New York when Tyson Chandler went down.
Even though Carmelo Anthony is still the team's best player, Chandler is the most important. He's the one who the Knicks can't afford to lose, as he's the clear centerpiece of the defense, which is increasingly important on a team without much chemistry and depth of talent.
In this case, the front office deserves the blame for failing to properly build a supporting cast for 'Melo.
Brad Stevens is another example here, though the Boston Celtics have intentionally minimized the amount of talent he has on the roster so that they can jump-start the rebuilding process. Same goes on a smaller scale for the Philadelphia 76ers' Brett Brown, who struggled without Michael Carter-Williams running the show.
As you might have noticed, surviving an injury is all about having an established system and making small tweaks to maximize the remaining talent. But even that can't be done in every situation.
Sometimes luck and the front office are too much to overcome.