Tom Tom, Pat Riley, Brian Windhorst discussed on The Dan Le Batard Show
STAN Van Gundy told you earlier he respects Brian Windhorst by horse is an excellent basketball writer and information guy. If you want to check out his hoop collective podcast, you can do. So new episodes every Monday and Thursday. You can listen on all the ESPN an apple gizmos stand. Go ahead and tell I know you said this earlier, but Brian Windhorst wrote the article why the NBA executive coach doesn't work, and he laid out the argument of the failures. That that have led to Tom recently being fired. So go ahead and tell Brian as he comes on with us how wrong he is. Well, what I said earlier is not only works. It has always worked in terms of teams getting better in a Gregg Popovich the obvious won five championships. The only conventional model that's worked better was Jerry Krause and Phil Jackson. Pat Riley took over the team in Miami. And eventually came back wanted championship. But certainly turned that around Doc Rivers for years with the clippers the best four year period in LA clipper history might Bhuttan Holzer improve the hawks by seven wins a year in the three years that he had both jobs. Tom thibodeau takes over a team averaging twenty eight wins a year the three year before he gets it. And if you average out what it would have been by his win percentage. He he wins an average of thirty nine games a year in Minnesota that team got better. And as I said, I was the worst. And we took over the worst team in the east. Okay. When we came in we improved it by eight wins a year over the four years we were there. So I'm racking my brain to find out win didn't get better with that. Right. So you guys go back to work on this. I won't give staff. This the pistons were a mess when he got there and he got into the playoffs. And that that's definitely true. I think it would use the Popovich in Pat Riley, examples, you're absolutely right, STAN. And I think they are the outliers. I think the clippers they had they had good teams. But I think from a front office perspective, they aided they did very poorly. When doc was was headed, the the president is one of the reasons why they took it away from him. And and the the the hawks went backwards. They were sixty when team in Danny ferries last year as the no win team in Mike's first year because Danny built the team Danny got removed before the season started. It was it was Danny's that was Danny's team that we are two years later when bud had control for two years. They were forty three win team. But I don't I don't even think we need to go blow by blow here. I think that the thing about it is. Like to. If you guys don't mind. Because the what it seems to me Brian at you're basing the fact that it fails on is that the owners decided to go in a different direction. So what you're basing the fact that the model fails on his you're saying the owners never make a bad decision. Oh, you're right about that. I think a lot I think just about everything that happens with teams can be traced ownership. I think ownership is the most important thing. Whether it's a coach Lexi who to work for or whether it's a player selecting who to play for. I think ownership is very undervalued. But I would say that one of the things, and you you can certainly speak to this day and age, you know, this was not the case with Red Auerbach, not even the case when when Pat Riley and pop took over their teams and established in the nineties, you get all of the blame draft pick doesn't work out. You know, you have a bad month's, you know, you you. There's an issue with a player coach relations. Ship. One guy gets all of the blame. And that was harder to survive that's harder to survive these days, and it was in the eighties and nineties when this when this rose up, and that's something. I think is a is a big factor here in today's day and age where the media is all over the league. Like, for example, one of the one of the first things that Doc Rivers did when he became president was the front office botched managing the hard salary cap. They use a full mid-level exception hard cap their team and ended up having to trade away, a first round pick to get out of a mess that they put themselves in for no good reason. You know, you didn't have media all over every single move. Every single, you know, your salary cap machination and weren't pointing out Dr screwing that up that wasn't happening in nineteen ninety seven one Pat Riley was running the heat. It is a completely new world out there, and that makes it harder that you know, that means that to be successful in that job to survive. It you've got to have great seasons. You've gotta you've gotta have Gregg Popovich type seasons. And part of the reason why pop was has been so good in. That is an RC. Buford is a hall of fame general manager who's out there finding in these incredible players. It wasn't Papa sound manager. Nobody and Tony Parker was RC. Now, he drafted him and he gets credit for that. And you know, I would say that your general manager in Detroit. Jeff Bauer was one of the most highly respected executives in the league. You talk to people in the league. Nobody would say. Anything but positive things about Jeff power. It is a really really hard job though, especially when you inherited a mess of a situation when they had five coaches the previous seven years and very limited talent on the roster. You have to read the needle and be so good in that job because any mistakes that happens comes back to you. And I think that's a scenario that is different today than and it makes it harder to survive in that job than it was when Popovich and Riley took over STAN, well, I'm not arguing that it makes it harder to survive. But I I don't think it means that it hasn't that it hasn't worked. I mean, it's worked in terms of every team that's done. It. The team has gotten better on the court everybody that's done it. And certainly there's front office mistakes made. I mean, we don't have the time in this entire show to outline the ones that I made Brian. But that's not to say that people with the conventional model aren't making just as many mistakes, we wanna go or. Innovation by organization, and because the jobs are split up. They don't make mistakes. I mean, that's I think not true at all every one of these teams and the most recent situation with Tom you wanna talk about taking it to the playoffs since two thousand and four that team was a laughing stock. He made them relevant. He got him to the playoffs in forty seven wins in the west this idea that Tom Tom typical failed in Minnesota, not even close. I don't know how anybody could come to the conclusion that he failed there. Now, they decided to make a change. They do it. Glenn Taylor can do what he wants is an owner. I've always been supportive of that. It's the owners team. He does what he wants. But there's nobody that gonna convince me that Tom dibitetto failed in Minnesota Brian did he fail? But see. Here's the thing. Again. I'll go back to one of the points in this article is that this will still happen again. Because there will be teams who are so desperate to recruit coaching talent. But they will give the coach both jobs, for example. What stan? Golden State Warriors. Correct me if I'm wrong, STAN, we're ready to make you their coach. It was the most attractive job on the market. They wanted you. And you were so in demand, Tom Gores from the owner of the pistons would like I watched him Van Gundy, so bad, I giving everything he wants giving him the money. I'm giving him the years. I'm giving him the job title that will happen again. This is not going away. But the tips point the trade that he makes the reason kids got fired was because he bet big on Jimmy Butler and Jimmy Butler did not reciprocate. And and that failure was the reason at the end of the day was the reason why he lost his job because what happened with the team had the general manager made that trade, and he'd been the one that had to take the bullets for that failure, Tom typically, I would still be the coach if there was some general manager general manager access Milton Newton had retain the job when flip passed away and Milton Newton had made it Jimmy Butler trade even at Tom timid. I'll tell him to do it, Jim. It would be Milton. Newton's neck was on the line or. Manager general manager ex. And that's just one of the things that is just so different. Like, you know, I am an agreement with stand in the general idea here that that that if you know basketball, and you have full control your team that you may be able to improve the team. I just think it's really hard in today's environment for to work because of that. Well, I would agree with you that it's hard on coach. There's no question in terms of the way that your evaluated, but I think from the team's perspective. The team has always gotten better when people have done this. And it's amazing to me though, that the narrative now is this doesn't work. I think one of the things that happened is, you know, Adam silver came out against it in Adams, a great great Commissioner and the owners will pretty much. Everybody appreciates Adam wants to please. Adam Adam doesn't like it teams are going away. But to promote a narrative that it doesn't work, and especially in this last case with Tom that it didn't work it didn't work for Tom. Okay. Because he did end up taking the blame. I don't even know why he's why there's blame to be passed around who won this fight. One..