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Scott Allen Skiles (born March 5, 1964 in LaPorte, Indianamarker) is the head coach of the Milwaukee Bucks and former American professional basketball player. He also is the former head coach of the NBA's Chicago Bulls and Phoenix Suns. Skiles holds the NBA record for assist in one game, with 30. In 1990–91 he won the NBA Most Improved Player Award.

High school and college

In 1982, Skiles led Plymouth High School to the Indiana State Championship. Plymouth, with no starter taller than 6'2" and no reserve taller than 6'6", was considered to be the weakest of the final four teams in the tournament that year even though they were ranked #4 in the state with a record of 26-1 entering the state finals. Amazingly, they won the state title with a 75-74 double overtime victory over favored Gary Roosevelt. In that game, Skiles scored 39 points (to follow-up his 30 point performance against Indianapolis Cathedral that morning) to lead the Pilgrims past the Roosevelt Panthers. His long field goal, that was well beyond where the current three-point line is (no three-point shot existed in 1982) as time expired sent the game into overtime. With a student body of 900, Plymouth was the smallest school to win the championship since Milan in 1954. Skiles scored 25 of his 39 points in the championship game after the third quarter of play. During the 1982 season, Skiles led the state in scoring, averaging 30.2 points per game. He set several records during high school, including most points in a home game (53) and most points in an away game (56). He left Plymouth as the schools all-time career scoring leader (1,788 points). A record that would stand until 2005 (Kyle Benge-1,979 points). Skiles had his number 22 jersey retired at Plymouth High School in 1992.

Skiles attended Michigan State Universitymarker, where in his senior season he was a First Team All-America selection as well as the Big Ten Conference MVP and scoring champion. He left MSU as its all-time career scoring leader (2,145 points) and still holds the Spartans' record for most points scored in a season (850). While in East Lansing, he was arrested and charged with felony possession of cocaine and misdemeanor possession of marijuana. The cocaine charge was dropped when Skiles pleaded guilty to the marijuana possession. He was arrested and charged with drunken driving a year later and served 15 days in jail.During his senior season, Skiles committed a parole violation on an earlier marijuana conviction, and served a brief jail sentence.

Professional playing career

The Milwaukee Bucks made Skiles the 22nd overall selection of the 1986 NBA Draft. In ten seasons, he played for the Bucks (1986–87), Indiana Pacers (1987–89), Orlando Magic (1989–94), Washington Bullets (1994–95), and Philadelphia 76ers (1995–96).

In 1989, Skiles was selected by the newly-formed Orlando Magic in the NBA expansion draft. In that year Skiles would become a pivotal sixth man, and as backup point guard amassed 7.7 points per game, 4.8 assists per game, and twenty-one minutes per game. The following year he would transition to the position of starting point guard.

On December 30, 1990, Skiles racked up 30 assists in Orlando's 155-116 victory over the Denver Nuggets, breaking Kevin Porter's NBA single-game assists record (29). He averaged 17.2 points and 8.4 assists per game that season, doubling his marks from the previous year and earning the NBA Most Improved Player Award.

In 1996, nursing a serious shoulder injury, Skiles left the U.S. for the European league and joined PAOK in Thessalonikimarker, Greece. At PAOK, expectations were high for the new arrival from the NBA. Midway through the season, however, injuries and contract problems with key players threatened to devolve into a disastrous season for PAOK and French coach Michel Gomez. Still struggling with injury himself, and increasingly at odds with his coach, Scott asked to be released from his contract. Instead, President Lakis Alexopoulos fired Gomez and offered Skiles the job. Despite lacking three of their top players due to injury, Skiles led PAOK to a winning record as coach in the remainder of the '96-'97 season, and an unexpected 3rd place finish in the league tournament.

Coaching career

The following year Scott Skiles returned to the NBA as an assistant coach with the Phoenix Suns and was later elevated to head coach (1999). Under Skiles, Phoenix compiled a winning record (.595) and made the playoffs in two of his three years, including a first-round win over the defending NBA champion San Antonio Spurs in 2000. In 2003, after a two-year absence from the game, Skiles came to the Chicago Bulls as head coach where he focused on improving the young Bulls' defense and developing greater consistency in a talented but underachieving team. In the first full year under his direction, Chicago limited its opposition to an NBA-best .422 field goal percentage and held their opponents to a franchise record and NBA season-high 26 straight games below 100 points. Scott was named NBA Eastern Conference Coach of the Month for January 2005 after guiding the Bulls to an NBA best 13-3 mark in that month.

In 2006, Skiles led his Bulls to a 41-41 record (earning a 7th seed in the playoffs) and faced the Miami Heat (the 2nd seed) in the first round of the playoffs, losing in six games. However, in 2007, Skiles led the Bulls to a 49-33 record, and again faced the Heat, this time sweeping them in four games. However, the Bulls went on to lose the first three games of their second-round series against the top-seeded Detroit Pistons, losing Game 3 at the United Center after holding a double-digit lead for much of the game. After winning two consecutive games to stave off elimination, the Pistons finally finished off Skiles and the Bulls in six games.

Scott Skiles was fired from the Bulls on December 24, 2007. At the time, the Bulls were last in the Central Division with a 9-16 record after having high expectations heading into the season. "This was a difficult decision to make, but one that was necessary at this time," Bulls general manager John Paxson said in a press release.

On April 21, 2008, a report surfaced that Skiles has verbally agreed to become the new head coach of the Milwaukee Bucks.

Coaching record

PHX
1999–00
62 40 22 .645 3rd in Pacific 9 4 5
Lost in Conf. Semifinals
PHX
2000–01
82 51 31 .622 3rd in Pacific 4 1 3
Lost in First Round
PHX
2001–02
51 25 26 .490 (resigned)
CHI
2003–04
66 19 47 .288 8th in Central
Missed Playoffs
CHI
2004–05
82 47 35 .573 2nd in Central 6 2 4
Lost in First Round
CHI
2005–06
82 41 41 .500 4th in Central 6 2 4
Lost in First Round
CHI
2006–07
82 49 33 .598 3rd in Central 10 6 4
Lost in Conf. Semifinals
CHI
2007–08
25 9 16 .360 (fired)
MIL
2008–09
82 34 48 .415 5th in Central
Missed playoffs
Career
614 315 299 .513 35 15 20

Quotes

  • When asked by a reporter in 2003 to describe what Eddy Curry could do to improve his rebounding, Coach Skiles responded: "Jump."
  • When questioned about an encounter between Charlie Villanueva and notorious flopper Anderson Varejao, Skiles responded: "I hope they'll launch an investigation to find the sniper who shot Varejao. I thought there was some acting involved."

Notes



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