Trail Blazers

Rick Adelman named a finalist for 2021 Basketball Hall of Fame

Trail Blazers

Rick Adelman is a coaching legend. 

He coached 23 seasons in NBA, calling the shots for some of the best teams in history. 

On Tuesday all his accomplishments were honored when the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced Adelman was one of 14 finalists for the 2021 Hall of Fame class.

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Over his illustrious career, he roamed the sideline for the Golden State Warriors, Sacramento Kings, Houston Rockets, and Minnesota Timberwolves. 

But he is perhaps most well-known for his time as head coach of the Portland Trail Blazers.

Adelman started his NBA coaching career as an assistant with the Blazers in 1983 and was elevated to head coach during the 1988-89 season after Mike Schuler was let go.

In 1989-90, his first full season at the helm, he led the Blazers to the NBA Finals. Two years later, he had them in the finals once again. 

Unfortunately, the Blazers lost those two trips to the finals, but they lost to the Bad Boy era Detroit Pistons and Michael Jordan led Chicago Bulls, two of the greatest teams of all-time.

When Adelman left Portland in 1994 he had 291 wins under his belt, the second-most in team history at the time. 

He has since been passed on the list by Terry Stotts, but Adelman remains the only coach other than Jack Ramsay to lead the Blazers to the NBA Finals, and the only coach to lead them there more than once. 


Adelman holds an overall coaching record of 1042-749, the ninth most in NBA history. He reached 50 or more wins 11 times in his 23 seasons, with his best record coming in 1991 when the Blazers finished with 63 wins. The 63 win mark remains a Blazers record, and Adelman coached teams are responsible for three of the five winningest seasons in Blazers history.

Adelman also coached the four best seasons in Sacramento Kings history, leading the Kings to a team record 61 wins in 2002.

Coach Adelman is one of the greatest to ever do it and will forever be a Portland Trail Blazer.