Former NBA, ABA coach Tom Nissalke dead at 87 - Sat 24 Aug 12:03 GMT

Tom Nissalke, who was the first coach of the Jazz in Utah, has died. He was 87.

  Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window) Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window) Click to share on Flipboard (Opens in new window) Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window) Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Tom Nissalke, who won coach of the year honors in the NBA and ABA, has died.

  Nissalke passed away at his home in Salt Lake City on Thursday after facing a “series of health-related problems” in recent years, according to the Deseret News.

  Nissalke was also an NBA head coach in Seattle, Houston, and Cleveland.

  Nissalke got his start in the pro ranks as an assistant with Milwaukee and helped guide a team featuring Hall of Famers Oscar Robertson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar to an NBA title in 1971.

  He led them to a 42-42 record in his first season and was named the league’s top coach.

  Nissalke then coached the Utah Stars and San Antonio before returning to the NBA with the Rockets.

  Nissalke was named the NBA’s Coach of the Year after going 49-33 in 1976-77.