Brown not the best option
Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 2, 2005
Every coaching hire, no matter the coach and no matter the team, is always made out to be the perfect marriage, thanks in large part to the lovely people in public relations.
The case of Larry Brown and the New York Knicks is no different; especially considering the fact that the biggest drama queen of a coach is bringing his act to Broadway, where every move he makes and every little failure to come will be relentlessly criticized.
There is no doubt in anyone’s mind, including my own, that Brown will make the Knicks a better team right away.
But is merely ‘better’ good enough in the Big Apple.
The answer to that is most definitely no, as is evident with every coach, with every team and with every star player that has ever played in the city.
The Knicks are not the &uot;Larry Brown kind of team&uot; that he has excelled with in the past.
Brown loves to have role players that get along and that he can mesh into one very good team.
What the Knicks have are a bunch of overpaid, overhyped players that do not fit into the Larry Brown system.
This is most glaringly seen in self-proclaimed &uot;best point guard in the NBA&uot; Stephon Marbury.
Sorry Stephon, you are nowhere near the best point guard in the NBA.
He’s also not the type of point guard that Brown has had success with.
He has the attitude of Allen Iverson but not the skills and we know how Brown dealt with Iverson’s attitude – by arguing publicly, then making up and then quickly leaving, as he does with every team he coaches.
What Brown needs is a selfless point guard who will do as Brown says, play hard-nosed defense and eventually become a star, just as Chauncey Billups did for Brown in Detroit.
Marbury and Brown publicly feuded last summer at the Olympics, and that’s at the Olympics where everyone is supposed to get along.
Good luck with that one, Larry.
His troop of forwards/centers is not nearly as talented as the trio of Ben Wallace, Rasheed Wallace and Tayshaun Prince are in Detroit.
Tim Thomas, Kurt Thomas and Nazr Mohammad are about as good as it gets for Brown, none of them fitting into the &uot;all out hustle and defensive&uot; mold that he needs.
Now of course they could trade all of these people for players more suitable for Brown’s system or they could wait until they become free agents and sign whoever Brown wants.
Neither of these will ever happen.
First of all, most of the salaries on this team, especially Marbury’s, are way too high to be traded, as no team in their right mind will want to take on the contracts of a proven loser in Marbury or the has-been’s of Allan Houston and Anfernee &uot;Penny&uot; Hardaway.
Brown is stuck with the Knicks’ core of players until they become free agents and by that time Brown will be past boredom.
Not only is his health quickly declining, but Brown won’t stay more than three years anyway, especially if his team isn’t making the conference finals.
The conference finals is a long way off for the team who finished last season 16 games below .500.
Now I’m going to go out on a limb and say the Knicks will reach .500 this year – a drastic improvement from last year.
A .500 record may make the playoffs in an ever-improving Eastern Conference, only to get pounded by the Heat or Pistons in the first round.
It won’t take long for Brown to get frustrated with the team, or the city to get frustrated with Brown before he and his health give out.
What the Knicks need is someone who will stay for the long haul, will get along with the players and instill some confidence in a city that needs more than its fair share.
Brown may bring some of that confidence, but he won’t be there for long and he won’t win a championship – anything short will not be enough for the New Yorkers and their newly found high hopes.
If you agree or disagree from anything between my being completely wrong about the NBA Finals, to Billy Beane’s genius, to Coach K’s production ineptitude, to Larry Brown, email me. My address is email@example.com.