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Cursed coaches

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Sports fans are a suspicious lot, refusing to wash their underwear during a playoff run or foregoing shaving to stave off defeat.

The Sports Illustrated cover jinx is so notorious that the magazine actually wrote about the topic in 2002. The "Why Oklahoma is Unbeatable" cover in 1957 led to the undefeated Sooners snapping their winning streak in their next game to Notre Dame.

A newer curse could hit close to home within the coming years. Oklahoma City Thunder Head Coach Scott Brooks is the latest winner of the 2009-10 NBA Coach of the Year. That's all well and good, but when you consider what happened to others recently hoisting the Red Auerbach Trophy, you start to wonder, according to Royce Young of DailyThunder.com.

"With 2008-09 Coach of the Year Mike Brown getting fired (May 24), the COY Curse thing has become a hot topic of conversation," Young wrote. "The last four Coach of the Year winners were fired within two seasons of winning the award. Avery Johnson won the award for 2005-06 and was fired in 2008. Sam Mitchell won in 2006-07 and was fired in 2008. Byron Scott won in 2007-08 and then fired in 2009. Mike Brown won the 2008-09 award and was axed this week. So who's the dead man walking that won the 2009-10 Coach of the Year? OH CRAP."

Young tempers his concerns with praise for the popular Brooks " "excellent with the media, he's kind and he's a pretty darn good coach" " but he writes about a scenario where the forecast might not be so sunny.

"Let's say the Thunder wins 53 games next year," Young wrote. "They draw the four-seed in the West and lose in the first round to a quality team. Then in 2012 when the Thunder's supposed to REALLY compete, they start slowly. Something like 15-15 around Christmas time. Couldn't you see Brooks getting fired for that? I could. I definitely don't agree with it, but I could see it."

Why are NBA coaches so quickly replaced? It all comes down to impatient expectations, according to Rey Jefferson of Dime Magazine.

"The franchise immediately begins to have a false sense of where they are headed, and some of these franchises believe that they are now championship contenders and don't allow time for their team to grow," Jefferson wrote.

On the bright side, NewsOK.com's Berry Tramel blogged that Brooks ranks 17th in NBA coaching longevity.

"Believe it or not, 13 NBA teams have made coaching changes since the Thunder elevated Brooks to the job in November 2008," Tramel wrote. "Welcome to the volatile world of NBA coaching."

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