Sunday, May 25, 2014

Gregory Crawford On Basketball, For May 25th, 2014

By Gregory Crawford---Print, Radio and TV Basketball Analyst ----twitter @wchoops @crawssportsbiz

Erik Spoelstra----It is always baffling why Erik Spoelstra, coach of the Miami Heat gets very little credit for being not just a good coach, but a great coach.

There is no denying in the fact that Spoelstra has the best player in basketball on his team in LeBron James, not to forget two other great players in Chris Bosh and Dwayne Wade. But after those three, most basketball fans can't name three other players on the Heat team.

For the record, let's not forget the Heat are on there way to their fourth straight appearance in the NBA Finals. Spoelstra himself has three NBA titles to his credit, one as an assistant in 2006 with the Heat and of course the last two NBA seasons as their head coach.

If you really watch Spoelstra in action, he is a master at in-game changes and halftime adjustments. It should also be noted that after losing a game in the playoffs, in the next game the Heat have now won 11 straight games. That alone is great coaching.

Just another example of great coaching, in game two of the Eastern Conference finals against Indiana, it took lots of courage and guts for Spoelstra to basically put LeBron James on the bench in the fourth quarter for three minutes with his team trailing by seven points. But the move was brilliant, as when James re-entered the game he willed his team to victory by having a spectacular final six minutes.

In all of sports, the basketball coach is the most important coaching assignment. It is rather evident, that at the present time, Erik Spoelstra is the best coach in all of basketball, end of story and yes even better than Gregg Popovich.

Equally as important, Spoelstra does not care about being the greatest coach, he just goes out and does the greatest job with little fanfare and always a call to business. As basketball fans, it is time we recognized just how great a job he does.

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  1. I agree that Spoelstra doesn't get enough credit as a coach because he's coaching the Miami Heat. and the like of Lebron/Wade/Bosch. I would like to see how he does in a different setting, or with a different group of players, though, before I would pronounce him as the best coach in the league. Better than Popp? That would be tough to say at this point. I like Doc Rivers a lot as a head coach as well. I don't think there are as many great coaches in the league as their used to be, and I am particularly biased towards a "great coach" as someone like Jack Ramsay, or Pat Riley. I actually think Ramsay was a much better coach than Phil Jackson, but most would say I'm crazy to say that - so I won't say you're crazy for thinking Spoelstra > Popp. I just think that's a really tough sell at this point in Spoelstra's career. He's certainly a lot classier than Popp, IMO, who just seems downright rude and arrogant at times.

  2. He's also an alum of Jesuit High School and the University of Portland, so he gets major points for that!! :)

  3. All good thoughts Brian, I am looking at the body of work in the present, which points in my opinion to Spoelstra.