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Old 05-20-2009, 01:35 AM   #1 (permalink)
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20 Greatest Coaches of all time #3

1: Pat Riley
2: Phil Jackson
3: ?

For number 3, I have to go with Red Auerbach over the likes of Larry Brown and Greg Popovich. The Celtics dynasty was just too impressive and he didn't have a huge talent advantage over Philadelphia though his depth was always superior (Wilt had Arizin, Gola and Rodgers). And yet he always won.

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Old 05-20-2009, 02:21 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: 20 Greatest Coaches of all time #3

That's a very good list. Riley's strengths are well covered, but his biggest weakness (which is sort of a strength actually) was drilling good habits into his players in practice. Of course, he took that too far at times; I not so fondly remember his mini training camp with the layoff between series in the 89 postseason leading to the hamstring injuries to Worthy and Magic after they swept the conference. That was bad luck too, but it doesn't help when you're not giving players any rest. Insane.

Jackson's resume also speaks for itself. Great thing about Jackson has always been the attitude and confidence. With the Bulls it was just the right combination. He knew when to unleash his two doberman defenders and frequently made use of Pippen's strengths on the high post better than he's given credit for. That said, he seems to have gotten more out of touch in his old age, in terms of reaching younger players and mostly especially in terms of discipline. Sort of the opposite of Riley, not enough practice at times but lots of extended film sessions.

Larry Brown is up there for his ability to teach and discipline so thoroughly, that's true. He's the classic teacher but a strong personality. Set in his ways and terribly unreliable to boot, has coached I don't know how many teams and isn't loyal. Sort of a pain in the *** actually.

I think Mike Brown will soon top this too. He has improved a ton since his first season, really shown a wonderful ability to adapt and I think has some of that X-factor attitude that is necessary to instill confidence in players. Though that's tough to measure.
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Old 05-20-2009, 10:06 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: 20 Greatest Coaches of all time #3

Gotta go with Red here, nine rings don't lie.
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Old 05-20-2009, 12:19 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: 20 Greatest Coaches of all time #3

Larry Brown. The guy won everywhere (except NY) he went (including College)

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