Today’s NBA Head coach compared with past coaches

Posted by By at 21 July, at 14 : 14 PM Print

Today’s NBA Head coach compared with past coaches

The era of the legendary head coach has passed. A coach cannot in today’s NBA succeed through motivation, through being a ‘father figure’ to his players or an all-knowing oracle of game plans, offensive plays and NBA rules. The NBA is now in the era of the ‘diva athlete’. It has been for awhile but now, more than ever. A diva athlete is a player who is, on paper, the best player on the team. The athlete’s talent and abilities probably are far better than any two players on the team. But the diva athlete confuses his happiness and performance with the team’s success and failure. The more he is placated by management and the coaching staff on every need he has, the better he performs. The better he performs, the more the team wins in his view.

Also, an NBA coach jumps too fast at the chance to be a head coach. The motivations are driven more by salary than if he is ‘ready’ to be a leader. Most head coaches, it can be argued are better assistant coaches and most in today’s NBA return to assistant coaching and contribute more (PJ Carlisimo, Maurice Cheeks, Lawrence Frank, Ron Rothstein) to the team than they ever did as a Head Coach. Some head coaches probably need to return to being assistant’s but out of pride, can only demand to be a Head Coach (the Van Gundy brothers, Paul Westphal). Then they join the ‘retread’ coaches who cycle through job openings among the different NBA teams. A head coach assumes too much pressure probably trying to fit the mold set by previous coaches (Riley, Jackson, Daley, Auerbach, Wilkens). Coaches today like Larry Drew, Erik Spolestra, Tom Thibodeau and Rick Carlisle are the standard for a successful head coach in today’s NBA (good coach, good coaching staff, good balance).

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