View Full Version : ESPN - 3/24/06 - 'Larry Brown is no genius'

03-24-2006, 07:22 PM
Brown is no genius

Chris Broussard
posted: Thursday, March 23, 2006 | Feedback

I was as guilty as anyone. Last summer, when the Knicks were pursuing Larry Brown, I said on national TV that he was the best fit on the planet for Isiah Thomas' club. I also said Brown's brow-beating, micromanaging style was crucial to Detroit's success the past two years and that without him, the Pistons would not win the East (while that may yet prove true, it certainly won't be because of Brown's absence).

I was not alone in my exaltation of Brown. In NBA.com's annual preseason survey of GMs, Brown was voted the best coach in the league, and only 15 percent of GMs thought Detroit would win the East without him. Most GMs actually thought Indiana would beat out the Pistons for the Central Division crown, and 73% gave the East to Miami.

That makes me feel better about putting Brown on a pedestal, but as you might imagine, I've had a change of heart.

Since hardly anyone else is willing to say it, I will: Brown is overrated.

He's still a very good coach (historically speaking), but he's not the legendary genius he's been touted as the past two years. He's not in the class of Red Auerbach, Phil Jackson, Pat Riley and Gregg Popovich. And this year, he's been the worst coach in the league. By far.

Brown's been so bad that it's tempting to think he's purposely sabotaging the season. I refuse to make that claim because I can't imagine anyone doing that, but I also can't imagine that he's truly as overmatched as he appears to be.

When the Knicks hired Brown, one of his former players (a retired guy who had a long and productive NBA career) told me Brown was going to create a rift with his best player (Stephon Marbury) and break the Knicks down to rock bottom so that when he built them back up, he would look like a savior.

Obviously, the first part of that prediction has come true, but even if Brown turns the Knicks into a playoff team next season, he won't look like a savior to me. I don't think the Knicks should be nearly as bad as he's made them this year.

If Isiah Thomas had announced when he was hired that in two years, the Knicks would have Marbury, Steve Francis, Eddy Curry, Jalen Rose, Quentin Richardson, Jamal Crawford, Malik Rose and one of the league's top three or four rookies at power forward - all being coached by Larry Brown - New York would have gone bananas (in a good way).

So for all those ripping Isiah, save a little thunder for the head coach.

One highly-respected executive told me last week that "if anything, the Knicks have too much talent.'' He added that he can't understand the moves Brown's been making.

But I am not basing my demotion of Brown on this season alone. While he's had great success all over, he's also had too many missteps to be a "legendary'' coach. People make a lot out of him turning San Antonio from a 21-win team his first season into a 56-win team the next ('89), but the addition of David Robinson had more to do with that resurrection than Brown.

Then, in his fourth and final season in Indiana, Brown failed to get the Pacers into the playoffs. The next season, Larry Bird, who had never coached a game in his life, led those same Pacers to the conference finals.

And of course, there were the 2004 Olympics. Brown was as bad then as he has been this season. I know that team was poorly put together, but it still had two MVPs (Allen Iverson and Tim Duncan) and the four best young players in the world in LeBron James, Amare Stoudemire, Dwyane Wade and Carmelo Anthony.

Yet Brown hardly played the youngsters, even though Anthony was his best shooter and one of the few guys with extensive experience against a zone defense. James made something good happen every time he entered the game, yet he got few minutes.

Why not press fullcourt when depth and athleticism are your major advantages? Why not double team Carlos Arroyo to take the ball out of his hands instead of letting him single-handedly lift Puerto Rico over Team USA?

Even in Detroit, folks forget that Brown's Pistons had lost 7 of 8 games before trading for Rasheed Wallace. Detroit was already a two-time 50-win team that had made the conference finals under Rick Carlisle the year before Brown got there. When Joe Dumars added Rasheed to that club, it was lights out. They went 20-5 the rest of the regular season.

But nobody knew at the time how good they were, so when the vastly underrated Pistons beat the mighty Lakers, who boasted four future Hall of Famers, in the 2004 Finals, the only explanation seemed to be that Brown had worked a coaching miracle.

Never mind that Karl Malone was hurt, or that Gary Payton was a physical shell of himself and in a mental funk because of Phil Jackson's triangle. Never mind that Shaq and Kobe were feuding.

That's when Brown went from being viewed as a very good coach to one of the top five of all-time.

Perhaps the only good thing about this Knicks season is that it has brought Brown, and the rest of us, back to reality.


Coaching hot seat kinda cool

By Chris Sheridan
ESPN Insider

When he found himself sitting in the hot seat, whether his stint there was real or imagined, Lawrence Frank never felt even a twinge of nervousness.

"It didn't strike up any paranoia, because I know we're all on the same page here. There was supposedly a conflict because I wasn't playing the guys Rod [Thorn] and Ed [Stefanski] brought in, but I speak to Rod and Ed every day, so it didn't really have any effect."

Lawrence Frank
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images
Lawrence Frank says he never felt his seat get warm in '05-06.

Frank's brief flirtation with job jeopardy came earlier this month as he was stuck on 99 career victories and the New Jersey Nets had lost five out of six. An item in the New York Post suggested Frank's job status was shaky, but Thorn came to Frank's defense publicly a day later and the story went away -- the rumor mill having digested a small morsel of disharmony during the dog days of a season in which stability in the coaching ranks has replaced the rampant turnover of recent years.

Only Stan Van Gundy in Miami (Dec. 12) and Bob Weiss in Seattle (Jan. 3) have lost their jobs this season, and the month of March is apparently about to pass without a single sacrificial lamb biting the dust. It's quite a turnaround from March of a year ago, when Maurice Cheeks, Johnny Davis, Don Nelson and Paul Silas lost their jobs.

"Most of the times when there's a coaching change during the season, it's usually a situation where there's such a problem that the team needs to do something just to get through the season," said agent Lonnie Cooper, who represents several NBA coaches. "But there's not a lot of drama out there this year."

One of Cooper's clients, Doc Rivers, had a brief brush with job insecurity earlier this month when The Boston Globe reported that Rivers was mulling a return to broadcasting and might step down as head coach of the Celtics this summer.

The smart money now says Rivers will be back next season.

"I'm certain of it," team president Danny Ainge said Thursday night from the Georgia Dome, where he was scouting the NCAA Tournament.

So if there really is a hot seat, who's occupying it? The best place to look is northern California, which is where we'll begin our listing of each NBA coach and where he stands in terms of job security.


Mike Montgomery, Golden State
The Warriors have missed the playoffs for 11 straight years, and it's about to become 12 for one of the biggest disappointments in the West. Montgomery has been the easiest target to aim at, but he has said the criticism he has received has bothered his wife more than it has affected him. With two years remaining on Montgomery's contract, Warriors owner Chris Cohan would have to think twice about letting him go. Does Montgomery expect to be back next season? "Once you start talking about it, it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy,'' Montgomery told Bay Area reporters. "The question people have to ask: Is it all me? If it is, then the answer is obvious.'' If there's a No. 1 candidate to lose his job the day after the season ends, Monty is the guy.

Rick Adelman, Sacramento
The coach of the Kings has been on the hot seat all season because of his lame-duck status, but the Maloof brothers have stuck with him out of respect for what he has done for the franchise the past six years. Will Adelman be back next season? It's probably 50-50 right now. "He becomes a free agent at the end of the year, and if he isn't coaching here, there are a lot of other teams that would like to have him," owner Joe Maloof told ESPN.com on Thursday. "We'd love to have him back, but we're not going to make that determination until after we see how we do in the playoffs." There's also the question of whether Adelman will want to return or will feel the same way Nate McMillan did a year ago when he left Seattle after finishing his contract.


Sam Mitchell, Toronto
With the arrival of new team president Bryan Colangelo, many are assuming he'll want to bring in a coach of his choosing. But a couple of factors to consider: Mitchell is tight with Chris Bosh, and it'll be Colangelo's main priority this summer to sign Bosh to an extension. Also, if Mitchell is fired and the team performs poorly early next season under Colangelo's guy, all the finger pointing will be directed at Colangelo. Don't count on his setting himself up as a target.

Bernie Bickerstaff, Charlotte
The man who will control Bickerstaff's fate is Bickerstaff himself, and this is one of those rare situations where the coach can have a face-to-face conversation with the general manager simply by looking into the mirror. People close to Bickerstaff say he seems to be enjoying working with the players on the second-year franchise's roster, and he'll probably want to take a shot at having Emeka Okafor back healthy next season playing alongside Charlotte's next lottery pick.

Dwane Casey, Timberwolves
Casey signed a five-year contract this past summer, with the first three years guaranteed, and owner Glen Taylor gave him a somewhat tepid vote of confidence Sunday in an interview with the St. Paul Pioneer-Press. "You wouldn't even think about it until the year was over," Taylor said of a coaching change. "At this point, I'm supporting him and trying to help him as best we can. I still think he's a good coach. We've had a tough season. He's learning. I don't think he would deny that, with young guys and stuff like that."

Bob Hill, SuperSonics
The season has pretty much been a disaster from day one, but Hill got another year added to his contract after he replaced Weiss, which should keep him safe for the summer. It's hard to imagine Sonics management paying two departed coaches, and they'll still be paying Weiss.

Mike Woodson, Hawks
General manager Billy Knight took Woodson off the hot seat early in the season, and the Hawks are on pace to double last season's total of 13 victories. That should be enough progress to keep Woodson around, although all bets are off if Knight enemy Steve Belkin is successful at gaining control over the team's fractured ownership group.


Pat Riley, Heat
He has refused to discuss coaching beyond this season, which some have interpreted as leaving his future in doubt. But if the Heat fail to win the title this season, do you think Riley, who values his legacy so highly, will want to leave on such a negative note? Not a chance.

Jeff Van Gundy, Rockets
The lone remaining Van Gundy in the NBA coaching ranks probably gets a pass on account of the team's record without Tracy McGrady (3-19), but the double whammy of missing the playoffs and performing before an ever-increasing number of empty seats is not sitting well with ownership.

Larry Brown, Knicks
Never underestimate the chances of Brown's switching jobs, although he has 40 million reasons in the next four years to resist the urge to walk away after one of the worst seasons of his coaching career.

Brian Hill, Magic
He has been back with Orlando for only a little over a year, and he's finally starting to give a bigger role to Darko Milicic to defuse whatever tension might have been simmering in the front office. The organization sided with him in the Steve Francis feud, as sure a sign as any that he'll get more time to guide the team through its rebuilding phase.

Doc Rivers, Celtics
If Rivers decides he wants to walk away, it'll be because of family concerns. He had planned to move his family to Boston by now, but that still hasn't happened, and Rivers was worn out over the course of the season by trying to commute to Orlando to help raise his kids.

Jerry Sloan, Jazz
The NBA's longest-tenured coach always has said he'll walk away the day owner Larry Miller tells him he's no longer wanted, and that day is eventually going to come. In the opinion of Charles Barkley, the youngsters on the Jazz have tuned Sloan out.

Lawrence Frank, Nets
Another first-round flameout could doom him, but he has the support and respect of his players and his owner. If the Nets make a major change in the offseason, it likely will be geared toward trading for Kevin Garnett rather than bringing in a new coach.

Eddie Jordan, Wizards
The nation's capital will have playoff games for a second straight year, which should be more than enough to keep Abe Pollin happy and Jordan employed. The only thing that would jeopardize Jordan is getting swept in the first round.


Flip Saunders, Pistons: Having the league's best record in your first year will tend to keep your name off the hot seat list.

Phil Jackson, Lakers: Wasn't his relationship with Kobe Bryant supposed to have blown up by now?

Gregg Popovich, Spurs: Named the league's best coach by almost a third of NBA players in a recent poll.

Avery Johnson, Mavericks: No coach has ever had a better first 82 games, and Mark Cuban loves him.

Mike D'Antoni, Suns: The only place he's going is to Japan as Mike Krzyzewski's top assistant for Team USA.

Rick Carlisle, Pacers: Should remain entrenched in Indiana as long as Larry Bird is in the front office.

Mike Fratello, Grizzlies: He'd jump at the Miami job if it came open, but he didn't wait out the Stan Van Gundy thing when he had a chance. For now, he's entrenched in Memphis.

Mike Brown, Cavaliers: He's LeBron's guy, and they're going to the playoffs. 'Nuff said.

Mike Dunleavy, Clippers: The team holds a one-year option, and Dunleavy is much more likely to get an extension than to get canned.

Terry Stotts, Bucks: It's only Year 1 of the Stotts era, and the Bucks have never fired a coach after one season.

Maurice Cheeks, 76ers: No one has lasted two years in Philly since Larry Brown, but Cheeks will. At some point with the Sixers, there has to be some stability.

Scott Skiles, Bulls: This was a throwaway year because of the Eddy Curry trade, and Skiles gets a pass. He's beloved by the organization's higher-ups.

George Karl, Nuggets: If anyone loses his job in Denver, it'll be general manager Kiki Vandeweghe.

Byron Scott, Hornets: Has this vagabond franchise in playoff contention when many thought it'd be the league's worst team. That won't get anyone fired.

Nate McMillan, Trail Blazers: It's only his first year, and ownership is more committed to him than it is to staying in Portland.

Chris Sheridan, a national NBA reporter for the past decade, covers the league for ESPN Insider. To e-mail Chris, click here.


03-24-2006, 07:23 PM
Chat with Chris Sheridan

Welcome to The Show! On Friday, ESPN.com's NBA reporter Chris Sheridan will log on to chat with you about the NBA season up to this point. Chris came to ESPN from the Associated Press where he spent the last 10 years as the lead NBA writer.

SportsNation Buzzmaster: Hellooooooooo! Chris Sheridan will be here momentarily do dish out some NBA knowledge .. keep your questions coming.

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: Good afternoon from New York, where the feud du jour is Steve Francis v. Larry Brown. Never a dull day, as they say. Preferred topics today are coaches and their job security, the return of Amare Stoudemire and Jermaine O'Neal, the race for the best record and the biggest unsolved mystery of this season: Where and when will Latrell Sprewell play, if it all? Off we go...

Nishant (Tulsa,Ok): Do you think LSU didn't show any class in the final minute of the Duke game to players like Redick AND Shelden?

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: Get out of my chat room with your college basketball questions. And don't let the door hit you ...

Richie (orlando): Chris, will Amare's return push the Suns into the finals

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: As long as he isn't coming back too early, it just might. The Suns may hit a few speed bumps in the first and second rounds, but they'll get to the West Conf finals against Dallas or SA, and they can beat either of those teams (although I'd like their chances better against the Mavs than the Spurs). One of the tricks for Phoenix the rest of the way will be finding ways to keep Boris Diaw productive, because the ball isn't going to be in his hands nearly as much as it was before now that Amare is back.

Aaron (Salt Lake): Do you see the Heat picking Antonio Davis if he is healthy to replace Zo?

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: No, they'll bring Doleac in. That's why they've kept him on the bench for the entire season and never really considered trading him. He can't play defense like Zo, but he hits from 17 feet and in with pretty good consistency, especially off pick and rolls. Signing Davis would make little sense. He would not be playoff eligible since he wasn't waived before March 1.

michael (carlsbad): Is a return to the Knicks likely for Spree?

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: The Knicks? You may have forgotten about the night Latrell dropped about 70 f-bombs on James Dolan in Spree's first game back at the Garden after the Knicks traded him. It was way over the top, even for Spree. So I don't figure Jimmy D. and Spree are going to mend fences any time soon. My best reading on the Sprewell situation as of this point is that he still can't decide whether to play this season for a prorated share of the veteran's minimum of $1 million and subject himself to the criticism and second-guessing he'd receive after turning down $20-something million from the T-Wolves last year. I think it may be a pride thing with Spree, but he may have to swallow it and re-establish some market value for himself if he wants to play in the NBA next season.

Steve (Chicago): Which team will benefit more from the return of their super star, the Pacers or the Suns?

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: For both teams, the measure will be how far they get in the playoffs. The Suns want to get all the way to the finals, the Pacers want to get to the conference finals. I like Phoenix's chances for success better than I like Indiana's.

Jason (Houston,TX): Since I'm from Houston I despise the Mavericks but I think Avery Johnson should win coach of the year, he seems to make all the right adjustments and has coached through alot of injuries to key role players. Who is your leading candidate for coach of the year?

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: Right now my leading candidates are Avery and Pat Riley. There are very few coaches in the league that can get their players to listen to them, and these two guys are the best at it. Avery is going to be doing this for a long time, and I think Riles will be sticking around for at least two years after this season. He wants to go out with a championship, and he can do it with Wade and Shaq.

Chris LeVasseur (Windsor, CT): Hey why aren't your answers as fast as Simmons'? You guys should take chat lessons from him...

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: Does Simmons type with two fingers? I do. Chalk it up to a Jesuit education in which typing was not offered, and three years of Greek or Latin was deemed much more important.

ryan Indianapolis: what do u think of the point guard situation for the Pacers...

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: Well, it's a mess, really. Anthony Johnson is the man for the second straight season, and I don't think that was the plan going into 2004-05 or 2005-06. Tinseley gets hurt almost as often as Larry Hughes, and Sarunas jasikevicius has not been able to keep up with the pace of an 82-game NBA season. He was used to playing once a week for Maccabi Tel Aviv and dating Miss Universe the other six nights of the week. The grind over here has robbed him of his shot, which was his best asset.

Tiffany (Washington, D.C): Which coach is most likely not to have a job when next season starts?

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: I'll twist your question around a little and re-pose it this way: Which current coach will be out of a job or coaching elsewhere when next season begins? And my answer is Rick Adelman, who probably hasn't appreciated being kept a lame duck all season by the Kings. Joe Maloof told me yesterday that he won't decide for certain whether he'll want Adelman back until he sees how the Kings do in the playoffs. He also indicated that Adelman might want to move on, which struck me as a bit strange. But the more I thought about it and compared it to Nate McMillan's breakup with the Sonics last year, the more it started to make sense. That's why Adelman was one of just two coaches that I listed as on the Hot Seat in today's column looking at all 30 teams' coaching situations and who might be in job jeopardy.

Christopher (Phoenix): Yesterday I saw the article on who the pros think should win the MVP award, is there really anyway Nash won't win it?

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: He's a very strong candidate and he'd win it if the season ended now, but there's a month left. And if the Suns stumble down the stretch and Dallas finishes with the best record, it'd help Dirk's candidacy. Don't forget to factor in how Chauncey Billups and Dwyane Wade will pull in some strong support from Eastern voters, and who they rank second, third and fourth on their ballots will affect the vote tally. (Voters must submit five names, with the first-place pick getting 10 points, the second-place pick 7, 5 points for third, 3 for fourth and one for fifth.)

gerrill (detroit): do you think the pistons bench is good enough to help them win a championship

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: That's going to be a big question for the Pistons as we head into the playoffs, and it certainly doesn't seem as though Flip Saunders thinks all that much of it. He's playing his starters more minutes than any other coach in the league _ an issue I'll take a longer look at in a column coming next week.

George (Miami): The Nets are on a roll again- streakish is an understatement- but can they pull off their best winning streak of all during the playoffs? Can the Nets legitimately be a serious upsetter to go deep into the playoffs?

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: They're a team that people have a hard tim getting a handle on. Nobody picks them to do much, but nobody can dismiss them all that easily, either. A couple things they have going for them this year they they didn't have last year: Kidd, Carter and Jefferson have an entire season of playing together under their belts, and Nenad Krstic is about three times as good as he was a year ago. Every opposing coach I talk to when they come into the Meadowlands raves about the guy. Let's see how they do on the road against the Pistons on Sunday night. It's a good barometer game for them.

Dean (Phoenix, Az): Now that Stat is back I like the Suns chances at a run...regarding early round speed bumps, where do you see more problems 1st round Kings or 2nd Denver (from how it looks now)

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: I think they'll have a few problems with both of those teams, but they'd get it done in 6 games or less because they'd handle the pressure of a Game 5 and a Game 6 better than either Denver or Sac.

Christian (Houston): What are your thoughts on Dwyane Wade's emergence this year. I think he is the best player in the league.

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: He is the second coming, and just like Jordan, he needs to figure out how to get past the Pistons.

Anthony (Chicago): Are we all underestimating the ability of the Grizzlies to win? While they've been skating lately, if they are able to turn it around by the playoffs, do you see them being able to win a series or would they need a stoudamire of thier own to return to the lineup to win a series?

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: Let's see them win a playogg game before we talk about them winning a playoff series. That being said, I guarantee you Dallas or San Antonio will not take them lightly if that's who they end up playing in a 4-5 matchup.

Dean, Orl: Darko has been playing only 20m a game with 3-4 blocks per.. do you think he's the right combination for Howard? Which way we should go with all the Cap we have and a Lotto pick? thanks

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: The Magic think he might just be that perfect complement to Howard along the front line, and they get a free year to find out next season before they go after a max free agent like Rashard Lewis.

MARCOS (elk grove(CA)): Chris , does it made any sense for the Sonics tro try to trade Lewis to the Bulls for their 2 first rounds pick this year? Will the Bulls go for that??

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: The Bulls would never go for that because Rashard has an opt-out in his contract that he's going to exercise in the summer of '07. The Bulls are going to try to figure out whether they can get Kevin Garnett in a trade before they decide anything else.

SportsNation Chris Sheridan: That's it for today, folks. Thanks for all the good questions _ more than 1100 of them in the queue. Not bad for the dog days of March. We'll do this again next week.

03-24-2006, 07:34 PM
Bout time one of these writers sees Brown for what he is; overrated. I was saying that when he was in Philadelphia. Then again, I also said that the Mavericks would be better than they were last year, that Stromile Swift wasn't gonna make a damn bit of difference for Houston, and that Sacramento was going to suck ass this year (of course this was before the Artest trade.) Damn, I should be a writer for ESPN.

03-24-2006, 09:15 PM
Bout time one of these writers sees Brown for what he is; overrated. I was saying that when he was in Philadelphia. Then again, I also said that the Mavericks would be better than they were last year, that Stromile Swift wasn't gonna make a damn bit of difference for Houston, and that Sacramento was going to suck ass this year (of course this was before the Artest trade.) Damn, I should be a writer for ESPN.



03-24-2006, 09:22 PM

03-24-2006, 11:50 PM
Wow. One bad year for Brown and the knee jerking begins. Can't say that i'm not surprised. Forget what he did with the Pacers, Spurs, 6ers and Pistons. Let's look at what he did his first year with the worst assembled team in the NBA.

03-24-2006, 11:57 PM
Wow. One bad year for Brown and the knee jerking begins. Can't say that i'm not surprised. Forget what he did with the Pacers, Spurs, 6ers and Pistons. Let's look at what he did his first year with the worst assembled team in the NBA.

I don't think it's JUST one year. I've never liked him because you can't trust him to hang around. He's always looking for the next team and next payday.

03-25-2006, 12:18 AM
I don't think it's JUST one year. I've never liked him because you can't trust him to hang around. He's always looking for the next team and next payday.

Well I mean you can't discredit the success he's had with his previous teams. The only argument I think its valid is that what the success he's had the last couple of years was in a depleated Eastern Conference. He's had success everywhere he went. The fact that he's struggling with the Knicks doesn't surprise me. He inherited a bad team. I don't expect him to just come in and make a bad team good. Not with the personnel the Knicks have. I can see this article if it was a view years down the road but is it fair to attempt to discredit Larry Brown's achievements after his first season with a poor team? I think so. What coach could take this mess into the playoffs? If Larry Brown is overrated than who are the good coaches in the NBA? I hope we don't fee Pop and Jerry Sloan are overrated as well.

03-25-2006, 01:17 AM
Evilmav ... thanks for posting the articles.

I think Avery could get far more from that Knicks team than LB.

As the article said, LB likes to break down the team and then build it back up. Next year he will look like a genius with 40+ wins, he will be annointed a saviour and no one will remember they should have had 40 wins this year or 30 at the very least.

03-25-2006, 01:29 AM
Dtown, apparently you didn't read my post. There's no kneejerking here. I've ALWAYS thought he was overrated. He's an egocentric jerkoff. Sure, he's a good coach, and he'll win you some games, but he always, and I do mean ALWAYS alienates his players and eventually the organization and forces them to go another way. Good coaches can win some games, but great coaches can get the best out of their star players, no matter how selfish or hot-headed they are. Don Nelson got the best out of Latrell Sprewell. I doubt Larry Brown could do the same. Phil Jackson (as much as I hate him) can massage even the biggest of egos and get the absolute best out of any situation possible.

Honestly, do you think Larry Brown could've kept Kobe and Shaq together for 8 years and 3 championships. I sure as hell don't. He probably would've gotten one or two good seasons out of them, and then bitched his way out of the job just like he's done everywhere else, as he is right now.

Good coach? Sure. Genius? Hell no. Overrated? You bet your ass.

03-25-2006, 04:42 AM
Dtown, apparently you didn't read my post. There's no kneejerking here. I've ALWAYS thought he was overrated. He's an egocentric jerkoff. Sure, he's a good coach, and he'll win you some games, but he always, and I do mean ALWAYS alienates his players and eventually the organization and forces them to go another way. Good coaches can win some games, but great coaches can get the best out of their star players, no matter how selfish or hot-headed they are. Don Nelson got the best out of Latrell Sprewell. I doubt Larry Brown could do the same. Phil Jackson (as much as I hate him) can massage even the biggest of egos and get the absolute best out of any situation possible.

Honestly, do you think Larry Brown could've kept Kobe and Shaq together for 8 years and 3 championships. I sure as hell don't. He probably would've gotten one or two good seasons out of them, and then bitched his way out of the job just like he's done everywhere else, as he is right now.

Good coach? Sure. Genius? Hell no. Overrated? You bet your ass.

I wasn't saying you were knee jerking. I was referring to the media and this article. The media is all on his ass when he was winning championships and now he struggles with the Knicks and now their knee-jerking. I gotta disagree with you about not getting the best out of his players. That 6ers team made it to the Finals because they overachieved. From Aaron Mckie to Raja Bell to Tyronn Lue they all overachieved. Whether it was because of Larry Brown I don't know but it says a lot that he took that 6ers team to the NBA Finals. Even in the east.

03-25-2006, 10:35 AM
If Thomas gets fired within 6 months, Brown is a genius.

03-25-2006, 09:56 PM
That 6ers team made it to the Finals because they overachieved. From Aaron Mckie to Raja Bell to Tyronn Lue they all overachieved. Whether it was because of Larry Brown I don't know but it says a lot that he took that 6ers team to the NBA Finals. Even in the east.

The Sixers made the finals that year because A. Iverson was playing as well as he's ever played, and B. they were flat out the best defensive team in the league. That was a perfect Larry Brown team. He definitely got the absolute best out of that team, I'll give you that. However, I don't think it's inconceivable that someone like Popovich or Rick Carlisle might have gotten the same results.

03-26-2006, 11:12 AM
wasnt lue on the lakers? No big deal either way but all i remember about that series was him guarding ai and the lakers using him to play ai in practice. I could be wrong but i really thought he was a laker.

03-31-2006, 05:02 PM
These guys agree with the title of this thread.


03-31-2006, 05:15 PM
anyone that sees those three together on a team would realize that.

04-05-2006, 02:42 PM
Thanks, Larry, for the worst season in Knicks history
By Ken Shouler

Take it from a lifelong Knicks fan: This edition is the sorriest ever. And the reason is Larry Brown.

The last Knicks championship was 33 years ago ... 33 -- that was the number of Patrick Ewing's jersey and Cazzie Russell's jersey. That was six presidents ago. In the spring of 1973, the World Trade Center officially opened. The Watergate hearings had just begun.

It has been a long time between sips of champagne. This year has made it seem intolerably longer.

Before his hiring, Brown was anointed as the Socrates of the sidelines, capable of divining the inner mysteries of 12-man harmony. He said coaching the Knicks was his "dream job" and that former Knicks coach Red Holzman was once his "hero."

No rational person expected the 2006 Knicks to play at the divine level of Holzman's 1970 and 1973 championship teams. After all, six Hall of Famers emerged from those two squads.

But Brown signed for a price that could have paid for New York's previous 20 coaches combined, to navigate the Knicks' floundering ship in the direction of the team's golden age.

He has not merely failed in that effort. He has failed utterly and to a degree no one could have imagined. Worse, he has done so without dignity or grace or accountability. His performance throughout this season has been petty and mean-spirited.

Brown has employed 39 different starting lineups. No one, not even his own players, can divine his kaleidoscopic pattern of lineups and substitutions. If you can figure it out, please get in touch with me for your next assignment: to explain the sound of one-handed clapping.

New York won 33 games last season, and talk before this season centered on how Brown probably needed to add just 10 wins to get New York into a postseason tournament that welcomes more than half the teams in the league. As it turns out, he wouldn't have needed 10. But it's a moot point -- the Knicks are on pace to finish 21-61. Did the Knicks hire Brown to subtract a dozen wins?

What else has gone wrong?

Well, he has dogged Stephon Marbury, his best player, running him down in the press on a regular basis. The Marbury slamming started at the 2004 Olympics in Athens and continued last August -- just a month after Brown was hired -- when he asserted that Allan Houston was New York's "best player" last year.

Oh, really? The same Allan Houston who missed 62 games and averaged 11 points last year was better than Marbury, who played every game and posted 21 points and eight assists a night? Explain that one. Moreover, explain why you would say that aloud.

To be sure, Marbury is an easy target. His detractors rattle off his failures in Minnesota, Phoenix and New Jersey as readily as they bring up Brown's record of improving his teams.

Larry Brown has attained cult status as a thinking man's coach. He coached the 2004 Pistons to a title. He has made many teams better than he found them. The other side of bettering them is leaving them: He has coached nine ABA and NBA teams in 22 years.

But his handling of Marbury and the rest of the Knicks demonstrates his willingness to scapegoat his players. It seems that Brown believes he is responsible when his teams win, but not when they lose.

"I've made every team I ever coached better," he said. "Every one. Look, I've been coaching how many years? I never left a team in worse shape than I got it. Not one. Now think about that. Think about me and think about the guy who's talking. I never left a team in worse shape. Never asked anything of my players any different than I'm doing right now. Think about that. Think about that. So the bottom line is, I want us to rebound, defend, share the ball, play hard. That's all. If you can't do that, if that's not important enough to you, it's not on me. It's not on me."

It's not on me. It's on Marbury, the guy who leads the team in minutes, scoring, assists and steals -- one of two players in NBA history to average 20 points and eight assists for his career. (Oscar Robertson is the other.)

When teams play worse, it's not Brown's fault. He had very similar critiques of the Pistons when he coached in Detroit. For instance: "We have to play a lot harder, we have to be a lot more aggressive, we have to share the ball better, rebound the ball better. I think those are things that you talk about every game, though. I say this over and over again. I write on the board before every game, play hard, play unselfishly, play smart, try to defend and have fun."

According to Brown, he wins games but doesn't lose them.

To reinforce his points, Brown criticizes his players relentlessly, both publicly and privately.

"Never in all my years have I seen a coach run down his best player in the press like Brown," one veteran NBA writer said.

"I covered him for six years in Philadelphia and he did it all the time," said another, unsurprised at his antics this year.

To get some perspective on the Knicks' disastrous season and Brown's handling of his team, I talked to the player I consider the greatest Knick of all, Walt Frazier, a longtime color commentator for Knicks games. What does Frazier think about Brown's tactic of playing canary to the media? Did Red Holzman settle scores in print?

"Red would get in your face," Frazier said, laughing. "But not in the press."

Bob McAdoo, now a Miami assistant coach, played for Jack Ramsay on the Buffalo Braves during 1973-76 and for Riley with two Laker title teams in 1982 and 1985. Did either of those coaches upbraid players in the press?

"Oh no," McAdoo replied. "Everything was in-house, behind closed doors. The fans never knew the inner workings of the team."

Why did those coaches hold their fire in the media?

"What good could come out of that?" McAdoo added. "Why attack your top players? They are prideful and they're not going to take an attack from anyone."

I asked Frazier more specifically about Brown's contention that Marbury is the problem.

"Stephon is damned if he does and damned if he doesn't [according to Brown]," said Frazier. "If he scores, he's selfish. If he doesn't, he's not playing up to his potential.

"They have to get along," Frazier said. "Marbury wants to win. He came up to me on the plane and pointed to my [1973 championship] ring and said, 'I want what you have.' Besides, the guy has skills; he can get to the basket against anyone."

Frazier ought to know. Consider the greatest day in team history, May 8, 1970. New York played Game 7 of the NBA Finals against the Lakers -- who had Jerry West, Elgin Baylor and Wilt Chamberlain -- with Reed, their center and league MVP, badly injured. Frazier filled the void, recording 36 points, 19 assists and seven rebounds in a 113-99 victory.

"Red always instructed us to hit the open man," Frazier said. "That night I was the open man."

This season sullies that '69-70 season and some of the other greatest memories from Knicks history -- the 1973 championship squad and its legendary team play; the overachieving '84 Knicks, led by coach Hubie Brown and superstar Bernard King; the physical, ferocious '94 squad coached by Pat Riley; and the team of seven seasons ago, which made a surprise dash to the Finals.

Across nearly 50 years, the coaches of the best Knicks teams -- Joe Lapchick, Red Holzman, Hubie Brown, Pat Riley, Jeff Van Gundy -- sucked every ounce of talent and effort from their troops. They didn't always win it all, but they emptied the tank in the attempt. When they lost, they lost without disgrace.

Even when the Knicks were truly bad, the scent of those years didn't rival the unbearable stench of this one. This season is singular, dubiously singular, in turning losing into disgraceful losing. Hello, Larry.

04-14-2006, 08:52 AM
April 14, 2006
Cavaliers 91, Knicks 87
Brown Is Taken to Hospital After Knicks' Loss in Cleveland

By HOWARD BECK (http://query.nytimes.com/search/query?ppds=bylL&v1=HOWARD%20BECK&fdq=19960101&td=sysdate&sort=newest&ac=HOWARD%20BECK&inline=nyt-per)
CLEVELAND, April 13 Knicks (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/news/sports/probasketball/nationalbasketballassociation/newyorkknicks/index.html?inline=nyt-org) Coach Larry Brown (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/b/larry_brown/index.html?inline=nyt-per) was taken by stretcher to an area hospital late Thursday night after experiencing an undisclosed ailment during the game against the Cleveland Cavaliers. (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/news/sports/probasketball/nationalbasketballassociation/clevelandcavaliers/index.html?inline=nyt-org)

Brown, 65, looked ashen as he was wheeled out of Quicken Loans Arena by emergency medical technicians at about 11:40 p.m. Brown was strapped to a gurney and had an oxygen tube attached to his nose.

The Knicks did not provide any specific information about Brown's condition, but a spokesman said that his vital signs were stable. Brown, who had at least one heart test, believed to be an EKG, was expected to spend the night in the hospital for observation.

Brown was examined for at least an hour by a Cavaliers team physician and accompanied to the hospital by a Knicks physician, Dr. Martin O'Malley. Neither doctor was available to reporters. The Knicks' director for player care, Dr. Lisa Callahan, spoke by telephone with the Cavaliers' physician and relayed the information to the Knicks' spokesman, Jonathan Supranowitz.

Supranowitz, quoting Callahan, said that the decision to hospitalize Brown was made because "it came on so suddenly." Supranowitz had earlier described the ailment as an upset stomach. A statement from the Cavaliers said Brown had acid reflux.

This is the second time in six weeks that Brown has checked into a hospital during a road trip. Brown had chest pains on a flight to Memphis from San Antonio on Feb. 27. Brown later played down that incident, saying, "I have an athletic heart and sometimes it gets crazy, beats crazy, but that's been my whole life."

Brown's health has been a concern for more than a year. He missed 17 games during his last season with the Detroit Pistons (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/news/sports/probasketball/nationalbasketballassociation/detroitpistons/index.html?inline=nyt-org) after having a hip-replacement operation, which led to a bladder problem. He has talked about possible surgery to correct the bladder problem this summer.

Brown left the bench Thursday night with 3 minutes 6 seconds left in the third quarter and the Knicks leading, 62-52. An assistant, Herb Williams, coached the rest of the game, which the Knicks lost, 91-87.

For 45 minutes after the final buzzer, a parade of Knicks assistants and staff members, and Cavaliers General Manager Danny Ferry and Coach Mike Brown both of whom have worked under Brown visited Brown in a room down the hallway from the Knicks' locker room.

At one point, Supranowitz emerged from the room and said that Brown told him, "I'm fine."

Given Brown's health and his history, and his struggles to coach the Knicks this season, Thursday's incident raises the possibility that Brown could seek an early exit from a five-year deal worth $10 million a season. He has clashed with many of his players, including the star guard Stephon Marbury (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/m/stephon_marbury/index.html?inline=nyt-per).

Earlier in the day, the injured Marbury seemed eager to unload about the issues he has had this season, saying he would have much to say after the season ends Wednesday.

"I told Jonathan to get the podium ready," Marbury, wearing a mischievous grin and nodding toward Supranowitz, said after the morning shoot-around.
When asked to reflect on the Knicks' dismal season and his own tumultuous year, Marbury said it was not time yet.

"We can talk about that the last day we get to speak. Don't worry, I'm going to answer all of y'all questions," Marbury said.

Efforts to trade Marbury are certain to top the Knicks' off-season agenda because of his public feud with Brown. While Marbury did not specifically criticize Brown on Thursday, he repeated some of the sentiments that sparked their debate last month.

Marbury has missed seven consecutive games because of a knee strain and has given no indication he will return.

"I ain't never worried," Marbury said, referring to the possibility of a trade. "I'm going to be back in New York. I'm not going anywhere, I don't think. As far as I know. I don't see why I'd be anywhere else other than New York."

Despite his assumption that he and Brown will spend another season together, Marbury said he saw no need to hash out their differences this summer.

"I'm fine," he said. "I'm comfortable with myself and I'm content. Like I said, I came here willing and able, 100 percent committed to do whatever he wanted me to do. I did it, it didn't work, so I'm going to play like how I know how to play."

That remark was an echo of Marbury's comment last month that he needed to go back to playing like "Starbury," his alter ego. Brown prefers his point guards to pass first and score when necessary. Marbury, a scoring guard for his entire career, has bristled at changing his style.

But, he said, "There have been people who've played for a coach who didn't see things the same way, and it worked out. I don't see why it can't work out. But like I said, and I'm going to say it again: I played like Stephon Marbury this year, and next year I'm going to play like Starbury."

Later, he sounded defiant about Brown's wishes. "Oh, he don't have to worry, I'm going to do everything that I did before he came here. I don't care what he wants to hear. I'm telling you what I'm going to do."

If Marbury is still a Knick next fall, it could be as a shooting guard, a role he has coveted.

"I don't know if I want him as a point guard," Brown said. "I want him as a basketball player."

Brown and Marbury appeared in sync when the Knicks won six consecutive games to open 2006. Then Marbury injured his shoulder and the team went into a tailspin. By the time Marbury was healthy, the season was lost as was whatever unity Brown and Marbury had.

"Believe me, this ain't going to be the same team," Brown said. "I think from Day 1, we've got to have a defensive mindset and we've gotta share the ball, we've gotta find people that'll do that, especially in the backcourt."

04-14-2006, 10:44 AM
Next year, I'm going to post like u2starajevo.

I feel sorry for the Knick fandom for having to put up with that ego-maniac. And the media feeds it, evidenced by this remark: That remark was an echo of Marbury's comment last month that he needed to go back to playing like "Starbury," his alter ego.I mean, this is reported like he actually has an alternate ego he can migrate to.

Funny. Sad, but funny.

04-17-2006, 03:49 PM
Look what Brown did to team USA basketball he destroyed it. Despite the ill fitting parts and bad chemistry we should have won the tournament. Yeah alienate Carmelo one of the best young players on the team. Or how about screw Darko's development by not playing him at all.

Isiah has zero business sense. Wait to destroy the CBA and now the Knicks. Even the Sixers situation is better than the Knicks. How can you spend over a hundred million and not get to the playoffs.

04-18-2006, 02:10 PM
Brown is the most overrated coach of all time. The question i have is, he says he wants his points to pass not score but he has coached AI and Chauncey in his last 2 stops? maybe if you want to coach a pass first pg you actually go to a team with one? or acquire one?