Pat Riley is undoubtedly one of the best coaches and executives of All-Time. The greats he has achieved while being a player, a coach, and also an executive are just unmatchable and also unbelievable. Being successful in all those runs isn’t easy and possible but Pat Riley got the job done and is one of the best winners in the sporting world.
Many know Pat Riley as one of the top coaches in the league’s history because of his time with the Los Angeles Lakers, New York Knicks, and especially, the Miami Heat. And, that’s understandable as he’s one of the Top 10 coaches in NBA history with a record of 1210-694 and has even made it to the Hall Of Fame. It took him 5 seasons as a player to become a champion. But only one season when he was a coach and 3 seasons when he was an executive.
Pat Riley still has a lasting impact on the league. As he still is the President of Basketball Operations for the Miami Heat. And, the team of several undrafted players which is put together by him and led by his guy Jimmy Butler is in the 2023 NBA Finals, so he may soon get another ring to add to the list of his accolades.
Pat Riley won his first of many rings with the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1972 season. That’s his only ring while having an impact on-the-court while balling out. All the rest of his rings come from the impact he had on the court while others were from the bench or at the front office. Then he went on to win five more rings with the Los Angeles Lakers as a coach. He even won one with the Miami Heat while being their coach and later got two more while leading the front office as the executive. So in total Pat Riley has 9 NBA Rings.
What years did Pat Riley win his Rings?
Pat Riley started collecting the rings as a winner while balling out on the court. His first ring came with the Los Angeles Lakers during his time as a player with them in 1972. After, that he joined the Los Angeles-based team’s coaching staff as an assistant coach and got his second ring in 1980. After, becoming the Head Coach in 1982 he got another ring for the team. And, with the Los Angeles Lakers went on to win more championships in the years 1985, 1987, and 1988.
Then he stayed off of it for more than a decade. But was back in the business with the Dwyane Wade-led Miami Heat and got the ring in 2006. In 2008, he stepped down from the HC job handing the responsibility to Erik Spoelstra but the job was still just getting done. As Pat Riley aced his role and made a superteam at Miami Heat. Then he went on to win the rings in 2012, and 2013 as executive.
1972: Pat Riley’s first and only ring as a player with the Los Angeles Lakers
In 1972 Pat Riley won his first-ever NBA championship ring with the Los Angeles Lakers. As the Los Angeles-based team reached the NBA Finals and knocked out the New York Knicks in five games. He was a reserve on the roster while the duo of Jerry West and Wilt Chamberlain destroyed everyone donning a New York Knicks jersey on the other end of the court.
1980: Pat Riley’s second ring with the Los Angeles Lakers as an assistant coach
After 9 seasons in the league while averaging 7.9 points per game, in 1976 Pat Riley hanged the gloves and retired. But just the next year he was back in the league and was broadcasting the Los Angeles Lakers games. In 1979, Jack McKinney met with a tragic accident that created space for Pat Riley on the coaching staff under Paul Westhead. And, that season was the beginning of the showtime era as the duo of rookie Magic Johnson and vet Kareem Abdul-Jabbar brought in another NBA championship for the franchise and Pat Riley got his second ring.
1982, 1985, 1987, 1988: Pat Riley wins 4 rings with the Los Angeles Lakers as head coach
Magic Johnson wasn’t happy under the system of Paul Westhead. So the ownership got rid of him and promoted Pat Riley as the new head coach of the team. In his first year itself, he turned the offensive team into a solid defensive team and went on to win the NBA championship against the Philadelphia 76ers. He got four straight NBA Finals appearances. But unfortunately, the Magic Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar-led Lakers didn’t shine bright every time they got on the bigger stage.
Pat Riley won his second ring as the head coach for the Los Angeles Lakers in 1985 after revenging the Larry Bird-led Boston Celtics. Then in 1987 having the best squad with the addition of James Worthy, Pat Riley got himself his third ring as they once again got rid of the Boston Celtics in the NBA Finals.
The 1988 season was a bit of a rollercoaster ride for Pat Riley and the Lakers. As they didn’t play like the defending champions throughout the regular season. But once the playoffs were on they didn’t show any mercy to their opponents and once again bagged the NBA Title and this time clowned the Detroit Pistons in the NBA Finals.
2006: Pat Riley’s first championship with the Miami Heat as Head Coach
It was Pat Riley’s second run with the Heat team and this time he had the dynamic duo of Dwyane Wade and Shaquille O’Neal to coach and get the job done through. The Dallas Mavericks led by Dirk Nowitzki were favored to win the championship against the Heat Team. But Pat Riley clowned them and wrapped up the series in six games with his brilliant coaching behind the great efforts of Gary Payton, Alonzo Mourning, Shaquille O’Neal, and Dwyane Wade. The season didn’t start well for Par Riley being back on the head coaching job but he did find his way up and got his 7th ring.
2012, 2013: Pat Riley wins two rings with the Miami Heat as their President of Basketball Operations
Since April 28, 2008, Pat Riley is completely committed to the Basketball Operations of the Miami Heat. He’s the reason behind LeBron James bringing his talents to the city. The super team he constructed alongside LeBron James and Dwyane Wade made it to four consecutive NBA Finals appearances and won 2 of them in 2012 and 2013. That gave Pat Riley his 8th and 9th championship ring. And, right now he’s out there trying to make it to the exclusive and very rare double-digits club.
Ritik Malik is an NBA writer at FirstSportz. He started following the basketball game around two years ago; since then, Ball has been Life for him. His idol is Kobe Bryant, he follows Mamba Mentality and aims to improve every day. Beside Basketball, he is also interested in E-sports, Cricket, Tech, Metaverse, and the business world.
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