Hot seat watch: 4 NBA coaches who could be fired this season

With some teams getting off to shaky starts in the season, their coaches' seat is getting warmer. Whether it's now or in the offseason, these coaches could be out of a job.

USA v Canada: 3rd Place Game - FIBA Basketball World Cup
USA v Canada: 3rd Place Game - FIBA Basketball World Cup / Yong Teck Lim/GettyImages
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No matter the sport, head coach is the toughest job there is. If the team has success, more times than not, players on the court are getting all the shine. On the flip side, when a team is struggling, more times than not, the blame is on the coach, his schemes, rotations, team management, and everything in between. Judging a coach is hard.

All things considered, though, if coaches have a track record, then it gets easier to see a pattern and identify what weaknesses a team has are a fault of the person drawing up the plays. And that's where we end up on this list. These teams have all been struggling so far in the NBA season, and that could cost these head coaches their jobs. We're specifically looking at four NBA coaches who could be fired because of their struggles this season.

As many involved in sports say: coaches get hired to get fired. If these teams don't fix their season, these coaches that once seemed like home run signings could be back on the job search.

4. Ty Lue, Los Angeles Clippers

I will preface this listing by saying that if I was in charge of all of these decisions, I wouldn't make all of them. In an ideal world, Ty Lue isn't one of the main people to blame if the Clippers continue their disappointing season. But, I've been following the NBA enough to know that front offices are capable of such things.

The Clippers got off to a 2-1 start this season, having all of their stars and role players (sans Terance Mann) healthy. However, long mentioned in rumors about acquiring James Harden, Steve Ballmer pulled the trigger to go as all in as humanly possible and got him. Since Harden debuted for the franchise, the Clippers are 4-6, which included losing their first five with the new-look squad, and two of their wins were against the San Antonio Spurs.

In the games with Harden, they're scoring just 107.7 points per game (26th in that span). In the five games before Harden debuted, they scored at least 118 points in all of them, but have only reached that mark in only two of the nine games since Harden started playing. Depending on who you ask, some fingers might be pointed at Lue for the lack of offensive structure in the season in general.

In saying all of that, it should be noted that the circumstances under which Lue has had to operate since becoming coach of the team have been less than ideal. Entering this season, Kawhi Leonard and Paul George had only played in 142 games together, counting regular season and playoffs, out of a possible 345 (41 percent of Clippers' games since both joined the team).

This season, they were healthy to start, finding a groove until the front office traded most of their two-way wings and, up until they got Daniel Theis after his buyout with the Indiana Pacers, they were only playing with one big man. Even prior to this season, Lue hasn't had his full squad: in 2021, they made it to a six-game Western Conference Finals against the Phoenix Suns, in spite of Leonard and George missing 20+ games in the regular season and Leonard getting hurt for the remainder of the playoffs in the second round. In 2022, they were without both for the Play-In Game at New Orleans. And last season, they were without George for their entire first-round series against the Suns, which they lost in five games.

Lue has overachieved every single season with this roster, and I would like to think that would be considered when evaluating his work for this season. Yet, there are always baffling decisions made by front offices every summer. If this team doesn't, at minimum, get eliminated in a competitive Conference Finals series against a superior team (the Denver Nuggets or Suns), Lue's job could be in great danger.