The Sportz Nutt Talks Great NBA Players/Coaches Turned Bad Decision Makers

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As I said in another article, I listen to NBA Radio a lot. The hosts are fantastic, and, if you get a chance, I recommend a listen and learn. That being said, they’ve been talking lately about the Knicks and their search for a head coach. It left me wondering the question: do the greatest NBA players/personnel of all-time lose some of their luster/mystique based on management decisions? Let me explain:

Isaiah Thomas

I went searching for specifics on why he was so bad after his playing career, and I found this article.

All I have to say is WOW! The  contracts he signed for players that didn’t mesh one bit. The Allan Houston contract is ridiculous in its own right, but paying Allen Houston (retired): $20M, Marbury: $18M, Jalen Rose: $16M, Francis: $15M and Crawford: $7M for a backcourt and extremely small team is, speechless. All of those active players are “me first” players who like to shoot. Incredible. He was so bad at his job that it took them years and years to recover from a financial standpoint. Unbelievable. Do yourself a favor and read that article!

Michael Jordan

The greatest player of all-time, but for years, as GM of a team, he flat out stunk. The entire franchise made mistake after mistake, never being able to rebuild the right way. Kwame Brown, first overall, was an absolute bust, especially when Tyson Chandler and Pau Gasol were waiting in the wings. He also traded away Gerald Wallace, which was brutal, in that he got scrubs back in return. Adam Morrison, was, well, Adam Morrison, and everyone but MJ knew it. A few years ago, this team was the worst in offensive AND defensive efficiency. There are smaller examples too, but the point is, for years and years and years (about 12), the team in Charlotte was bad. Every player they had with value was replaced with players of my abilities.

Phil Jackson

Ah, the real reason why I wrote this. Arguably the greatest coach ever, his triangle offense is the key. Or is it? For years he gave credit to his offensive scheme as the reason for his success. Not MJ/Pippen/Rodman or Kobe/Shaq et al……no, not the fact that he had some of the GREATEST players ever together on one team. Where was that triangle offense BEFORE the Bulls assembled in the early 90’s? So now, he joins the Knicks and is in charge of personnel decisions. He signs Carmelo Anthony and then tries to build around him…..with garbage. They have no picks, they have no assets, yet they have the triangle offense. This in a league that now plays to small ball and outside shooting. All while hiring coaches and forcing them to use an offense they either don’t know, or know, but play off their faults because they’re crappy coaches to begin with (Kurt “yes boss” Rambis). If his triangle offense was so great, why did they lose 20 more games than the year previous when they had an under-rated coach in Woodson?

So, overall, what does this do to some of the all-time greats? Should their on court production be hindered because their post-game careers have dwindled in misery? Thomas ruined the franchise of the Knicks, Jordan hasn’t made more than a handful of good decisions and Jackson has a dictatorship stranglehold of New York. Does it do anything for you? Does it tarnish their legacies because they’re not the ultimate Mr. Basketball? or is this just something going on in my head these days?

And there you have it.