Lakeland Magic’s Stan Heath named 2020-21 NBA G League Dennis Johnson Coach of the Year

NEW YORK – Lakeland Magic head coach Stan Heath has been named the 2020-21 NBA G League Dennis Johnson Coach of the Year, the NBA G League announced today.  Heath earned the honor in a vote by NBA G League head coaches and general managers whose teams participated in single-site play at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, Fla.

In his fourth season as head coach of the Orlando Magic’s NBA G League affiliate, Heath guided Lakeland to a regular-season record of 9-6 (.600), including five victories in its final six games.  The 5-1 finish earned Lakeland the sixth seed in the NBA G League Playoffs, where it went on to win the franchise’s first NBA G League championship.

The Magic sparkled on defense under Heath, leading the NBA G League in points allowed (101.5) and defensive rating (101.0).  Lakeland also held opponents to the lowest field goal percentage (42.5) and three-point field goal percentage (29.1).

Hired in 2017 as Lakeland’s first head coach, Heath has led the Magic to a record of 94-63 (.599) in four seasons.  Lakeland has posted a winning record each season under Heath, including a franchise-best 32-18 (.640) in 2018-19.

The NBA G League Coach of the Year Award is named for the late Hall of Famer Dennis Johnson, a star NBA guard and NBA G League head coach.  During his playing career with the Boston Celtics, Phoenix Suns and Seattle SuperSonics, Johnson won three NBA championships, earned five NBA All-Star selections and was named to the NBA All-Defensive First Team six times.  He was in his third season coaching in the NBA G League when he passed away in 2007.

Santa Cruz Warriors head coach Kris Weems and Raptors 905 head coach Patrick Mutombo finished in second and third place, respectively, in voting for the 2020-21 NBA G League Dennis Johnson Coach of the Year Award.

NBA G League Dennis Johnson Coach of the Year Award Winners
2020-21: Stan Heath, Lakeland Magic
2019-20: Martin Schiller, Salt Lake City Stars
2018-19: Will Weaver, Long Island Nets
2017-18: Mike Miller, Westchester Knicks
2016-17: Jerry Stackhouse, Raptors 905
2015-16: Dan Craig, Sioux Falls Skyforce
2014-15: Scott Morrison, Maine Red Claws
2013-14: Conner Henry, Fort Wane Mad Ants
2012-13: Alex Jensen, Canton Charge
2011-12: Eric Musselman, Los Angeles D-Fenders
2010-11: Nick Nurse, Iowa Energy
2009-10: Chris Finch, Rio Grande Valley Vipers
2008-09: Quin Snyder, Austin Toros
2007-08: Bryan Gates, Idaho Stampede
2006-07: Bryan Gates, Idaho Stampede

About the NBA G League
The NBA’s official minor league, the NBA G League prepares players, coaches, officials, trainers and front-office staff for the NBA while acting as the league’s research and development laboratory. Featuring 29 teams, 28 with direct affiliations to NBA franchises for 2020-21, the league offers elite professional basketball at an affordable price in a fun, family-friendly atmosphere. A record 45 percent of all NBA players at the start of the 2020-21 season boasted NBA G League experience. In fostering the league’s connection to the community, its teams, players and staff promote health and wellness, support local needs and interests, and assist in educational development through NBA Cares programs.