LeBron probably wouldn't be that great, but who would be?
LeBron James is one of the greatest NBA players of all time — but Memphis Grizzlies coach David Fizdale doesn't think the King has head coaching in his future:
"No," Fizdale told reporters (via ESPN) before Cleveland's 103-86 victory over the Grizzlies on Tuesday. "He would kill somebody. Perfection is like [his standard]. He wants perfection. I could see him actually owning his own team and doing something like that, but I think [as a coach], he would end up killing a player at some point because they wouldn't live up to the expectations that he would set forth."
And for his part, LeBron mostly agreed. However, Fizdale's comments got us thinking — with all of today's stars, role players and NBA veterans, which active players would make outstanding basketball coaches once their time in the league comes to an end?
While this list isn't exhaustive, and you might take issue with a selection or two, here are 20 NBA players we think would succeed as coaches.
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY SportsBob Donnan
Carmelo Anthony, New York Knicks
'Melo might not necessarily be the best guy to teach the next generation how to win championships, but he's blossomed into a full-fledged leader on and off the court, plus he's played for some of the game's best coaches on Team USA. And Anthony would be the best coach for explaining to players how to deal with media pressure.
Chris Bosh, Miami Heat
Bosh's playing career could very well be over. If he wants to stay connected to the game, though, Bosh could start learning the ropes as an unofficial coach on the Miami bench. With his calm demeanor and cerebral approach to the game, the Heat big man could end up as one of the greatest coaches ever.
Vince Carter, Memphis Grizzlies
Carter has seen it all in the NBA, from the heights of superstardom to embracing his transition to role player. That he's one of the nicest players in professional sports doesn't hurt, either, especially as the league shifts toward player-friendly coaching staffs.
Mike Conley, Memphis Grizzlies
Point guards often make the best NBA head coaches, and Conley is one of the most vocal on-court leaders in the league.
NBAE/Getty ImagesMelissa Majchrzak
With all the time Davis has spent on the bench in New Orleans due to various injuries, he must have learned a thing or two about coaching already, right?
The NBA can be a dirty game; being able to go all-out while simultaneously maintaining plausible deniability is key. And no one's better at pushing that envelope than Delly.
Jared Dudley, Phoenix Suns
From the moment he stepped into the league, Dudley has been preparing for his next career as either a coach or broadcaster. He's the quintessential role player who gets along with everyone and tries to make the team better. He'll be a coach before long, I'm sure of it.
James Jones, Cleveland Cavaliers
There's at least one James in Cleveland who would make a fine coach. "Champ" is beloved by his teammates and has studied the league for years. Plus, with his affinity for the 3-point line, he's uniquely qualified to lead a team in the new era.
John E. Sokolowski
Pau Gasol, San Antonio Spurs
The man has been on Sesame Street, for god's sake. He'd be the greatest teacher the NBA (nay, the world!) has ever known.
Manu Ginobili, San Antonio Spurs
In all honesty, you could probably throw anyone who's been with the Spurs for any length of time into a head coaching position and they'd thrive. Such is the nature of learning at the feet of Gregg Popovich.
Draymond Green, Golden State Warriors
Not every head coaching candidate needs to be a lovey-dovey, players-first kind of leader. Green would scream at his players until they did what he wanted — or until he got fired, whichever came first.
As one of the NBA's smartest players, coaching might be beneath Iguodala, who has venture capital aspirations when his playing days are over. If he wanted to apply that tech-savvy focus to basketball, though, there's no doubt he'd be one of the best coaches.
Kyrie Irving, Cleveland Cavaliers
Throw the Uncle Drew outfit on him, and Irving could probably coach the Cavaliers for a few games this season while Tyronn Lue rests his stars. Lue, in turn, could take a few days off himself. After dealing with J.R. Smith for a year now, he could probably use the vacation.
Robin Lopez, Chicago Bulls
I honestly believe that with his dedication to defense, Lopez would be an outstanding head coach someday.
Really, though, I just want to imagine the floppy-haired seven-footer standing on the sideline in a suit, yelling at players like he's Tom Thibodeau and handing out comic books as reading material like a nerdy Phil Jackson.
Dirk Nowitzki, Dallas Mavericks
Rick Carlisle is going to coach the Mavericks forever. If he ever wants to step down, though, Dirk would be a great replacement.
Chris Paul, Los Angeles Clippers
Like Green, CP3 would be an extraordinarily intense coach who would either win championships or burn out his players. Still, his demanding nature as a leader might be a nice fit with a young team in need of discipline and structure.
Austin Rivers, Los Angeles Clippers
A subpar backup point guard whose father was a player-turned-coach in his own right? Austin Rivers was born to be a coach in this association — almost literally.
Ricky Rubio, Minnesota Timberwolves
The man once told a teammate to "change his face" and be happy. If that's not coaching material, I don't know what is.
Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder
He does whatever he wants. If he wants to coach, then Westbrook will become an outstanding coach. More likely, though, he ends up continuing his work as a fashion designer once he's done hunting triple-doubles.