Better coach: Phil or Popovich?
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Better coach: Phil or Popovich?
Phil Jackson
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Greg Popovich
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CandyCanes
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 23, 2017 5:04 pm    Post subject: Better coach: Phil or Popovich?

Phil obviously has more than twice as many rings, but after seeing him fail so spectacularly as the Knicks president, I'm starting to buy into the narrative that it was only because he had such legendary players.

Popovich has a much better record of player development.
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 23, 2017 10:07 pm    Post subject:

Phil has a huge ego the size of an elephant. Pop is self-deprecating and makes it about his players.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 12:19 am    Post subject:

Phil did beat pop 3 different times. Twice when the Spurs were trying to for back to back.


Hard to say. Both coaches had amazing players. You cannot judge a coach based on his performance as an executive. They are both different jobs
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 1:59 am    Post subject:

How Phil did as an executive is irrelevant to who is the better coach. He is the most successful NBA coach of all time. Pop is one of my favorites and probably better at building a team from the ground up, but he cannot compete with Phil's hardware. He never even won a back to back. Easy call in my book.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 4:29 am    Post subject:

You can't argue with 11 rings.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 5:02 am    Post subject:

I could almost say Pop had he not taken Duncan out against the Heat in that Finals debacle, he one the worst coaching meltdowns I've ever seen.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 6:10 am    Post subject:

I go with Pop. 18 straight playoffs, 3 NBA Coach of the Year (Phil only won it once) 5 ships with the same team. No mind games, straight coaching. Every year fans say the Spurs are to old. Every year, there they are.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 7:41 am    Post subject:

Pop IMO is a better coach for a team with less talent but more star role players, built around one or two stars. Like anyone else who wins rings he needs a great group, but more of a group that is less talented at creating their own shot, more talented at other aspects of the game.

Phil IMO is the better coach when you have loads of star talent, put together and you need them to win. Phil can do what Pop does as well, with less talent, but not as good as Pop has. On the other hand, I don't think Pop can manage iso heavy, me first, star talent, quite like Phil has over his career as a coach. He knows the way to manage those things.

Both are amazing coaches. Hard to go wrong with either. I guess in a way, you'd want Pop, because he comes with less drama and is more consistent over the years, less drama over the years. But if I had just one season to work with, I'd go with Phil 10/10 times.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 7:57 am    Post subject:

Phil's troubles as executive do not diminish his role as a coach. 11 rings vs 5 is quite telling. Pop is not a shabby coach by any stretch, and if he were not the Spurs' coach I would like him a lot more.

You can say Phil had more talent, but Pop also lucked into having Duncan. And it does take a great coach to manage big egos and talents. You have to be bigger, somehow. Listedn to Doug Collins talk about how he used to coach Jordan. OK, he did, and Del Harris coached a very talented Lakers' team, but what did they do with those teams?
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 10:48 am    Post subject:

encina1 wrote:
You can say Phil had more talent, but Pop also lucked into having Duncan.


It wasn't exactly "luck."

Anyway, I don't know why everyone acts like that PJ coached a bunch of deeply talented teams, while Popovich had Duncan plus some role players. Those Spurs teams were deeply talented. They didn't have the glitz and glamor of MJ, Pippen, Rodman, Shaq, and Kobe, but Duncan, Robinson, Parker, Ginobili, and Leonard weren't a bunch of role players. Some of those Spurs teams were pretty loaded.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 11:35 am    Post subject:

Pop, he is able to evolve with the league, Phil lives in the past.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 12:35 pm    Post subject:

venturalakersfan wrote:
Pop, he is able to evolve with the league, Phil lives in the past.



Phil won a ring in his second season as a head coach at age 44 and he won a ring in his second to last season at age 64.

Pops won a ring in his third season at age 50 and he won a ring in his 18th season at age 65.

I don't think you can ding either in terms of longevity.

Bottom line for me is they were both great. I don't know who was a better coach, I don't know who had more talent to work with (hard thing to measure). But you can't deny their success puts both of them at the top of the heap.

It's like asking whether Wilt or Kareem was better-- in the eye of the beholder.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 12:38 pm    Post subject: Re: Better coach: Phil or Popovich?

CandyCanes wrote:
Popovich has a much better record of player development.


Pops has worked with more rookies than Phil.

But Phil had Kobe as a rookie, and Pippen and Grant at the early part of his career. Plus Gasol and Shaq really took off under him.

So I'd say that's a debatable.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 1:21 pm    Post subject: Re: Better coach: Phil or Popovich?

activeverb wrote:
CandyCanes wrote:
Popovich has a much better record of player development.


Pops has worked with more rookies than Phil.

But Phil had Kobe as a rookie, and Pippen and Grant at the early part of his career. Plus Gasol and Shaq really took off under him.

So I'd say that's a debatable.


Kobe's rookie season was under Harris
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 1:22 pm    Post subject:

Aeneas Hunter wrote:
encina1 wrote:
You can say Phil had more talent, but Pop also lucked into having Duncan.


It wasn't exactly "luck."

Anyway, I don't know why everyone acts like that PJ coached a bunch of deeply talented teams, while Popovich had Duncan plus some role players. Those Spurs teams were deeply talented. They didn't have the glitz and glamor of MJ, Pippen, Rodman, Shaq, and Kobe, but Duncan, Robinson, Parker, Ginobili, and Leonard weren't a bunch of role players. Some of those Spurs teams were pretty loaded.


No, they tanked but still had low odds to get him (Boston had the most ping pong balls that lottery). I'd still call that luck, unless you are implying something a bit more nefarious.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 1:46 pm    Post subject: Re: Better coach: Phil or Popovich?

encina1 wrote:
activeverb wrote:
CandyCanes wrote:
Popovich has a much better record of player development.


Pops has worked with more rookies than Phil.

But Phil had Kobe as a rookie, and Pippen and Grant at the early part of his career. Plus Gasol and Shaq really took off under him.

So I'd say that's a debatable.


Kobe's rookie season was under Harris



I was wrong. Phil joined the Lakers in Kobe's fourth season, right before he had a huge jump in performance. Does that mean Phil "developed" Kobe?

The Spurs have had a lot of excellent rookies. Is that because Pops is good at developing them or are the Spurs simply good at spotting talent?

That's the issue when you try to give people credit for stuff you can't really determine who's responsible for
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 3:19 pm    Post subject: Re: Better coach: Phil or Popovich?

activeverb wrote:
Is that because Pops is good at developing them or are the Spurs simply good at spotting talent?


Might be a bit of both, SAS has one of the best scouting teams in the league history. When Manu Ginobili was drafted #57, he was known as EuroKobe back in the day (yes he's from Argentina but flourished in Europe) and was able to work within Pop's system.

It's interesting to see if a player who underachieved with another coach could succeed with either Phil/Pop. Haven't thought about Pop's players, but I do know Phil's had some success with players that were castoff by other coaches.

Trevor Ariza: Former Hall of Fame Knicks coach Larry Brown, thought Ariza was delusional, so he sent him to Orlando for Steve Francis. Ariza was then traded to the Lakers and we all know how that turned out.

Shannon Brown: Shannon Brown was often in Larry Brown's doghouse and was sent to the Lakers as a throw-in with the Adam Morrison deal.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 3:36 pm    Post subject:

For some inexplicable reason, Pop still hasn't been able to guide his team to a single repeat.

2015 Lost 1st Round Clippers
2014 Won Finals

2008 Lost WCF Lakers
2007 Won Finals

2006 Lost 2nd Round Mavericks
2005 Won Finals

2004 Lost 2nd Round Lakers
2003 Won Finals

2000 Lost 1st Round Phoenix Suns
1999 Won Finals * (short season)
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 4:57 pm    Post subject:

One HUGE difference is that Pops was always the GM & Coach so he knew how to get players that fit in his system, while Coach (only) Phil had to rely on the genius (or lack there-of) of Mitch and Jimbo to try and get players for his system...!
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 6:25 pm    Post subject: Re: Better coach: Phil or Popovich?

K2 wrote:


It's interesting to see if a player who underachieved with another coach could succeed with either Phil/Pop. .



The challenge is there are a lot of factors for why a player could do better on one team that really has nothing to do with the coach. For example, it could simply be the player gets an opportunity because the new team has a greater need for him. Or the player might be at a better point in his natural development when he goes to another team.

It's really difficult to find cases where you can make a strong apples-to-apples comparison where the only significant difference is the coach. Often there is a perception a player improved, when all that happened is he gets more minutes but his per-minute performance doesn't change.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:05 pm    Post subject:

Pop.

Doesn't destroy a franchise in his week.
Mentors stud coaches and GMs.
Still a massive line of success, where the culture of the team turns overseen players into actual legit NBA players, and rare talents into superstars.

That last part is really the best.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:06 pm    Post subject:

I've got to go with Pop. Phil and Pop are great at Culture and player management, but it was Tex with the X's and O's in the Triangle. Pop does both.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 25, 2017 12:35 am    Post subject:

encina1 wrote:
Aeneas Hunter wrote:
encina1 wrote:
You can say Phil had more talent, but Pop also lucked into having Duncan.


It wasn't exactly "luck."

Anyway, I don't know why everyone acts like that PJ coached a bunch of deeply talented teams, while Popovich had Duncan plus some role players. Those Spurs teams were deeply talented. They didn't have the glitz and glamor of MJ, Pippen, Rodman, Shaq, and Kobe, but Duncan, Robinson, Parker, Ginobili, and Leonard weren't a bunch of role players. Some of those Spurs teams were pretty loaded.


No, they tanked but still had low odds to get him (Boston had the most ping pong balls that lottery). I'd still call that luck, unless you are implying something a bit more nefarious.


It was the Stern era, I don't think anyone has to imply nefarious....
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 25, 2017 6:29 am    Post subject:

both are legends in their own right, but I think how Pop has evolved with the league and his roster changes year-by-year, and staying competitive every single time, is so impressive
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 26, 2017 4:58 pm    Post subject:

K2 wrote:
For some inexplicable reason, Pop still hasn't been able to guide his team to a single repeat.

2015 Lost 1st Round Clippers
2014 Won Finals

2008 Lost WCF Lakers
2007 Won Finals

2006 Lost 2nd Round Mavericks
2005 Won Finals

2004 Lost 2nd Round Lakers
2003 Won Finals

2000 Lost 1st Round Phoenix Suns
1999 Won Finals * (short season)


He's lost to better teams in my opinion, where when Phil had repeat years it was because he had the better teams and talent.
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