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Don’t give up on Curry

John Hollinger’s Per Diem┬ádiscussed the growth of Cleveland coach Mike Brown, this year’s Coach of the Year. This paragraph made me think of Pistons coach Michael Curry:

The reason I bring up Brown is to point out something a lot of fans don’t consider: Coaches can be a lot like players. They have strengths and weaknesses, develop tendencies and can improve from year to year. Sometimes, they have good years and bad years — a point driven home to me by living in Atlanta, where a single coach has been working for the past half decade.

Hollinger compares Brown to Bulls coach Vinny Del Negro. Sometimes, Del Negro seems clueless. But Brown did that in his early years, too.┬áSo, it’s not unreasonable Curry get a lot better.

But to be fair, for every Mike Brown, there are several first-time coaches who fail and don’t develop. And it’s a little disconcerting how much better Del Negro looks than Curry right now, especially considering their common early-season struggles.

Check back for tonight’s live blog of the game.

2 Comments

  • Apr 21, 20093:24 pm
    by brgulker

    Reply

    If we’re going to compare MC to Brown or Del Negro, we at least have to be fair.

    So, some things that appear to be missing to my eyes.

    Mike Brown inherited LBJ, who may well become one of the greatest players of all time. MC inherited an aging roster of stubborn veterans who he apparently has very little control over. Plus, it was possible for a fan to point to some tangible improvements that Brown’s team was making over time, especially on the defensive end of the floor.

    Del Negro’s team didn’t start well, but they’ve played great basketball over the last 20-25 games. So, not only did they make progress over the course of the season, but they made that progress at the perfect time of the season.

    So, I guess what I’m trying to tease out is that if you look at Brown’s team(s) and Del Negro’s team, you can point to tangible improvements that would indicate that these two coaches have the potential to continue improving.

    My question to you is, what can you point to in this season that would indicate MC is capable of such improvement?

    He inherited a stubborn team, yes, but it was a team that won 59 games last season. And what has he done with it? And how can a realistic fan look at that track record and be rationally hopeful that he can improve?

    Heck, I’m a fan, and I want him to succeed, because if he succeeds, the team succeeds. But, there’s very little evidence to point to that would indicate he will develop into a good coach. In fact, given this season’s performance, there’s evidence that the opposite is actually the case.

  • Apr 21, 20098:31 pm
    by Dan Feldman

    Reply

    There’s very little to point to that shows Curry’s improvement, no doubt. But he went away from small ball and put Iverson on the bench.

    Jermaine O’Neal, Kevin Martin, David West, Michael Redd and Al Harrington all averaged fewer than five points per game as rookies.

    As Hollinger’s argument goes, coaches are like players. They can get better with experience.

    So, yeah, the evidence isn’t strong right now. But it wasn’t for those five players, either.

    I’m not a big Curry fan by any means. But I think it’s too early to shut the door on him.

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