MIKE D'ANTONI, Knicks, and LAWRENCE FRANK, Nets
Each must improve his team while the front office reshuffles the roster, laying the groundwork for a run at LeBron James in 2010.
GEORGE KARL, Nuggets
He has to convince his defense-challenged players that they can stop teams without longtime stopper Marcus Camby.
MARC IAVARONI, Grizzlies
He was rumored to be in trouble when he had Pau Gasol and Mike Miller. How can he survive with the West's least-talented roster?
SCOTT SKILES, Bucks
He wants his shoot-first team to make D the priority. Unfortunately, he has no lockdown defenders.
LARRY BROWN, Bobcats
He seems curiously drawn to difficult situations. At least this job will go more smoothly than his last one, in New York.
EDDIE JORDAN, Wizards
What could he do if his guys stayed healthy? We may never know, as Gilbert Arenas begins the year on the sideline.
MIKE WOODSON, Hawks
He earned some goodwill during the playoffs, but with a poor start he'll be feeling heat again.
10 INTRIGUING ROOKIES
GREG ODEN, C, Trail Blazers
Portland's other young talent relieves pressure on him to be a savior. But imagine if he is.
MICHAEL BEASLEY, F, Heat
Questions about his reliability and character take a backseat to his All-Star numbers.