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Miami Heat’s Erik Spoelstra makes history as first Fil-Am coach to reach NBA Eastern Conference Finals

(SPOT.ph) ERIK Spoelstra, head coach of Miami Heat, made history by becoming the first ever Filipino-American head coach to reach the NBA’s Eastern Conference Finals. This was realized last May 11, when his team defeated the Boston Celtics in their 5th game with a score of 97-87.

With Spoelstra’s lead, key players LeBron James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh and the rest of the team garnered a slot in the Eastern Conference Finals with winning the series 4-1.

Spoelstra is the son of Filipino Elisa Celino and Irish-Dutch Jon Spoelstra, a former NBA executive. Aside from being the first Filipino-American head coach to reach the Eastern Conference Finals, he is also known to be the first Filipino-American head coach to enter the NBA itself, as well as any North American professional basketball team. He first became involved with Miami Heat in 1995, when he was instigated as the team’s video coordinator. After a series of promotions and many positions over the years later, Erik Spoelstra became the head coach of Miami Heat, taking the place of former head coach Pat Riley in 2008. Since then, he has also been deemed as the youngest person to ever become a head coach of an NBA team.

Ever since being the head coach of the Miami Heat for around two years, Spoelstra has already lead the team to 90 wins and two play-off appearances.

Spoelstra also held a basketball sports clinic the previous year in his mother’s hometown, San Pablo, Laguna.

Miami Heat will be going against the renowned Chicago Bulls in the NBA Eastern Conference Finals this May 15, 2011.

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