Who is Keith Smart, and is he who he was when he was Nellie’s sub? If he was who I thought he was, his hire would signal a sideways step.

(I put a media narrative aside in red, re–, reh, ROYAL BLUE. You can skip to the Keith Smart part if need be)

Sportswriters love to psychoanalyze players to a degree that borders on egregious. They write reams of the stuff, most analysis is a shortened thesis on how a man’s victory is indicative of his moral virtue.

Example: “World Champion Kevin Humility Durant will supplant LeBron! He wrote 9-11 on his shoes! ON HIS SHOES!”

Or: “Kobe’s selfishness hinders his ability to win. He will never get a ring, sans Kazaam.”

Or: “Kobe won with his killer assassination belly-gutting, throat-stomping, orphan-nuking instinct. He finally gets it. Good father, too. Oh, and the cowardly unselfish LeBron just selfishly switched teams…on the heels of defeat. He might be a witch. We should test him.”

Oddly, not much mind reading is applied to the clipboard set. We second guess them, insult them, but we don’t think deeply about who they are and what that means. Media tells me that Phil Jackson is “Zen,” and Don Nelson is whimsically chaotic. Doc Rivers has participated in two of the last three Finals, and he’s just “that guy who coaches the Celtics.” The era of pinning the tail on the coach who chokes may have collapsed under the weight of the NBA star system. It’s all about the players these days, just look at MIA.

Adam Lauridsen beautifully fleshes out the coach vs. player tensions that pollute the NBA paradigm. I have no clue how prospective Warriors coach Keith Smart would handle all that, I just want him to eschew his December 2009 self…which was a facsimile of modern Don Nelson:

12/7 @Okc L 104-88
12/9 @Njn W 105-89
12/11 @Chi L 96-91
12/12 @Det L 104-95
12/14 @Phi L 117-101

That rancid roadtrip lies in obscurity’s hamper, but like an elephant I never forget–I also never stop eating the stale peanuts fed to me by GSW HQ. Smart was given the reins for an entire jaunt, and he promptly ran the carriage into an Alligator swamp. These numbers stand out:

  • Vlad Rad: 26 minutes per game. An amazing accomplishment for a player so slow, he ages twice as fast as Ellis, due to relativity.
  • Mikki Moore: 21 minutes per game. An amazing accomplishment for those who would wish to subvert NBA entertainment for their own evil ends.

Yes, Keith Smart was shorthanded like an ampuTee-Rex, but the decisions, the results, those fell shorter than his shorthand. And I was on Keith’s side, searching for a post-Nelson savior. He delivered the same small ball madness, but with more vigor.

So, is a Smart hiring just, “Once more, with feeling”? Or was KS merely following the orders that sent lemmings hurtling off the cliff? A move from Nelson is needed, but a new perspective would be ideal. Keith wasn’t the savior in the first go-round, let’s see if the rumored coach can bounce back like a leader.


One Response

  1. Eric

    Kinda reaching with this one. He was taking over for a few games mid-season. He wasn’t going to install a new system in just a couple of days…