Sometimes, Popovich Ain't Got Nothin'
You have to enjoy it when coaches offer valuable insight into their game strategies.
With five NBA titles under his belt, Gregg Popovich has earned the right to freely speak his mind.
After the San Antonio Spurs dismantled the visiting Cleveland Cavaliers Tuesday night, Popovich was quoted as saying, "Sometimes in timeouts I'll say, 'I've got nothing for you. What do you want me to do? We just turned it over six times. Everybody's holding the ball. What else do you want me to do here? Figure it out.' "
I couldn't agree more with what he's trying to say here. In a sense, sometimes less is more.
Popovich is trying to empower his players.
His teachings are not at all unusual. In fact, within the education realm, professors employ this type of method all the time. You're given the knowledge, and when called upon, it's up to you to apply it.
In order to develop into an efficient, communicative unit, players must find ways to fight through difficulties either by themselves or by openly discussing certain situations with their teammates. It's an effective selling point:
Extending this philosophy to sports, you can't always rely on your head coach when you're faced with a daunting scenario.
Popovich has exploited this method, and I'm sure, applies it more than we think.
I'm sure numerous other coaches use this type of strategy, too. When dealing with adults, you shouldn't always relinquish some sort of answer. You have to allow them the opportunity and autonomy to find the answer through trial and tribulation. Sometimes, what worked last night won't work tonight. It's up to players to adapt to their surroundings when faced with constantly changing defensive or offensive looks.
Although some may perceive this tidbit as lazy, I think it's pure genius. You can't argue with Popovich's ingenuity. He's certainly one of the most cerebral coaches around.
I enjoy Popovich's colorful banter. Even if his team is considered boring, he definitely shines an entertaining element into the Spurs organization.