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5 Former Las Vegas Sports Coaches (and Where They Are Now)
5 Former Las Vegas Sports Coaches (and Where They Are Now)

These former Las Vegas sports coaches couldn’t survive this city. What happened, and where are they now?

#5 Bill Laimbeer- Las Vegas Aces (2018-2021)

Las Vegas Aces,
Source. YouTube

Bill Laimbeer will always be known as the Las Vegas Aces’ first head coach. While he admitted to having burnout towards the end of his career, he still coached the team to three playoff appearances, a WNBA Finals appearance, and some pretty dominant performances. 

His overall record stands at 103-55 with the Aces, which will take a while for even Becky Hammon to beat. As for what the former coach is doing now, he spoke about that during a recent interview with ESPN. It looks like he isn’t really ruling out a return to basketball but wants to take time to enjoy things.

“Whether I participate in basketball going forward, I don’t know. It’s too early to tell,” Laimbeer said. “I just had six months off. I’ve never spent a summer at my farm in Michigan. So I’m looking forward to that. What the future holds, I don’t really have a solid handle on right now. I’m having fun.”

#4 Pete Deboer- Las Vegas Golden Knights (2019-2022)

Las Vegas Golden Knights
Source. YouTube

Pete Deboer is one of the Las Vegas Golden Knights’ best coaches, which is what makes his ousting so shocking. The man holds a 98-50 record at the helm and helped Las Vegas to two playoff appearances. Unfortunately, losing in the conference finals twice and failing to make the playoffs in 2022 put the lid on his relationship with the team.

Now Pete Deboer is the head coach of the Dallas Stars, who have a 40-24 record and sit second in the Central division. Deboer even beat his former team earlier this season, making the Golden Knights look like fools. Now, this doesn’t mean that current coach Bruce Cassidy isn’t an upgrade over Deboer, but the former head coach deserved a lot better.

Deboer was blamed for a season featuring disastrous deals, countless injuries, and a team that had their spirit broken. 

“This is a special place,” Deboer said earlier this year when facing the Golden Knights. “I want to thank Bill Foley and the people of Vegas, they welcomed an arch-enemy with open arms. I loved my time here; I kept my house here and probably would consider retiring here. I just loved everything about it, and it’s nice to be back and see familiar faces.”

#3 Gerard Gallant- Las Vegas Golden Knights (2017-2020)

Las Vegas Golden Knights,
Source. YouTube

Before Pete Deboer, Gerard Gallant served as the head coach of the Las Vegas Golden Knights. He took the expansion team on a 52-34 run in their first season. The effort was good enough to make the playoffs and even rise all the way to the Stanley Cup Finals against the Washington Capitals. 

However, in 2020, Gallant was fired halfway through the season after posting a 24-19 record. That remains one of the worst efforts in the Golden Knights’ history. It showed that Gallant was heading toward a downward spiral.

Fortunately for him, his career didn’t end there, and he eventually became coach of the New York Rangers. He even posted a 52-24 record in his first season and got them to the playoffs. The Rangers and Gallant ultimately lost in the Conference finals to the Lightning, but what a career comeback! In the 2022-2023 season, The Rangers are 44-21 and third in the Metropolitan division. 

#2 Jon Gruden- Las Vegas Raiders (2018-2021)

Las Vegas Raiders,
Source. YouTube

Jon Gruden is a controversial man, and his tenure with the Raiders is no different. While Gruden is the guy that took the 2003 Tampa Bay Buccaneers to the Super Bowl, he hasn’t reached nearly as far since then. In fact, his closest effort was an 11-5 season in 2005, where he was beaten in the Wild Card game.

Fast forward to his time with the Raiders, and he signed a 10-year, $100 million contract. He then put up a 22-31 record before resigning in shame in 2021 after problematic emails came to light. 

Gruden is now embroiled in a legal case over his forced resignation. He claims that the NFL conspired against him. 

‘I’m ashamed about what has come about in these emails, and I’ll make no excuses for it,” Gruden said in a 2022 interview with ESPN. “It’s shameful. But I am a good person. I believe that. I go to church. I’ve been married for 31 years. I’ve got three great boys. I still love football. I’ve made some mistakes. But I don’t think anybody here hasn’t. And I just ask for forgiveness, and hopefully, I get another shot.”

#1 Rich Bisaccia- Las Vegas Raiders (2021-2022)

Las Vegas,
Source. YouTube

Rich Bissacia should still be the head coach of the Las Vegas Raiders right now. Not only is that evident by his leading them to a 7-5 record during his short reign, but also by leading them to a playoff appearance. Of course, the Bengals would ultimately end their chances of advancing past the first round, but Bissacia proved his mettle as a coach in that game.

Unfortunately, he was let go at the end of the season and went on to become a special teams coach for the Packers. Staff apparently admired his effort and promoted him to assistant coach in 2023.  

Next: 5 mistakes The Las Vegas Raiders have already made this offseason

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