VDT wrote:Well Popovic is arguably the GOAT coach and he got eliminated in the first round by a green team like the Nuggets who is not some juggernaught and while he had an all star in Aldridge and a 4 time in prime/peak former all star in Derozan. I already mentioned Stevens who i believe is a very good coach but who failed miserably this year. On the other hand Tyron Lue won a title. Walton had a 39-4 record with the Warriors yet he was fired by the Lakers.
What i am trying to say is that coaching, within reason, is way down in the list of things that determine which team wins the title. The FO and the roster talent are far more important. Apart from that i think the coach's main influence is through the culture he creates and having the stars buy into what he is doing. Secondarily, also through the system he is running but that also largely depends on the stars of the team and is also influenced by the assistant coaches. His in-game decisions, that most people complain about, is probably the least important aspect, again within reason. Every coach is going to make decisions that turned out good or bad and probably every fanbase, including the Spurs, complains about that.
Regarding Brown, i think he has fared good during the tanking years, never lost the team, developed some players and had the team play with a system. I dont think one can really ask for more. Then last year the team overachieved in the regular season but probably underachieved during the playoffs. Was it Brown though that underachieved or was it Simmons/Embiid that underachieved compared to the expectations? This year i think it was the opposite, the Sixers underachieved in the regular season and imo overachieved in the playoffs. But again was it Brown? Because to me the lack of chemistry, expected for a newly formed team, the questionable fit, Simmons stagnation as a player and Embiid's injury/bad performance in the playoffs were much more important in the end results than Brown who i think was pretty good in the playoffs. I think he still doesnt have an idea how the offense should look like, but that has more to do with the roster than anything else. In the end he almost reached the ecf against a team that most people expected to beat us easily and with his best player playing quite bad relative to the regular season. Again i dont think Brown is some coaching genius but he is not that bad that he could negatively impact a team. If we can find a better replacement or he loses the team (which i think is quite possible next year due to the questionable fit of the team) then we should fire him. But right now with no coach to hire who would be a significant upgrade (or even an upgrade) it makes no sense to risk destroying the team's culture and chemistry.
I think a lot of the complaints about Brown stem from people over-rating our players, especially Embiid and Simmons who maybe excellent talents but they are not excellent players atm (particularly Simmons). In addition they dont particularly fit together and in addition his best player's game goes against the current trend. All these issues are going to be here even if Brown gets fired and i am not really sure how his successor will be able to deal with them in a significantly better way.
Good response. I just want to reiterate -- and it seems as if you might agree here-- that the effect of coaching is not negligible, even if it affects performance at the margins. We used to have these debates in Chicago, when Jerry Krause apparently tried to take more credit for the dynasty Bulls than many of us thought he deserved. Most of us were pretty insistent that the players were far, far more important than the GM or even the coach, although many also thought that Phil Jackson was pretty darned important in defining the crucial margins in some of the tighter playoffs and finals. And of course Krause did some very important things, too, most notably getting Pippen. Did a lot of mediocre and crappy things, too.
In other words: The Bulls never would have been in the dynasty conversation were it not for the players. But during some of those years, with some personality conflicts and warring egos, it's possible that the team might not have won all six of the titles that they did if they hadn't had Jackson calming things down and keeping it together. (He coached the MJ-less team that came within one Hue Hollins phantom foul call
on Scottie Pippen of advancing to the 1994 NBA Finals.) Was Krause's contribution negligible? I'm sure that it wasn't. But we never got to see a counterfactual in which some other GM assembled the team around Jordan. We did kind of get to see a Jackson counterfactual in 1994: the Bulls were good enough to have made the NBA Finals without MJ and with Jackson. Jackson in those days was a badass.
Back to your points: flip the Spurs narrative. Popovich's Spurs almost beat the Western Conference's #1 seed, and they did so with a 33 year old Aldridge, a flawed scorer (Derozan) whose superstar appeal I could never quite understand (since he can't shoot), and a bunch of has-beens and scrubs. I don't know how you can possibly spin that as a knock against Pops.
Brad Stevens: again, I don't see how you're spinning this one. The Celtics don't have the talent that the Sixers or Raptors or Bucks have, yet they once again competed against all of them. They overachieved last year and probably were at their appropriate level this year, based on their talent. I don't see how you call the Sixers playoff overachievers this year, either. We have a better starting five than the Raptors.
I don't for a moment make Brown the goat of this past series. He did a lot to help us get there. But it was such a close series, so eminently winnable, that it's hard not to suspect that if Brown were a little better at making late-game adjustments-- just as if Embiid hadn't been quite so out of it for part of the series, or if... well, you know the what ifs-- they might have won one of game four or seven. And hence it's hard to wonder what might be if the team had a coach who could do the things that Brown can't or doesn't. That's all.
My 2 cents. You may feel overcharged.