With the Philadelphia 76ers still in the midst of a chaotic playoff run, we take a look at why Brett Brown should get at least another year to coach this squad.
Unfair Deck of Cards Dealt
Brett Brown has arguably been unfairly criticized a lot this season. Some of the criticisms may have been fairer than others. Criticisms such as poor rotations, bad defensive strategies at times, as well as misusage of players, have their legitimacy. However, all of those problems have been addressed to a certain extent in this postseason.
While you make whatever negative judgment you want of Brett Brown, you have to deeply consider he has coached basically three different teams in the span of one season. The first team was one where Brett experimented with Markelle Fultz into the starting lineup. (Yes, that was this season!)
The next team being the post- Jimmy Butler trade. Brett had to implement a star player into the offense as well as the locker room. A player who has had some baggage according to others. This is no easy task for any coach. Especially, a coach who was all of a sudden, given championship expectations immediately following the trade. Keep in mind, this was a team entering the season following its first playoff run, as well as first 50 win season, in a long time.
Now, for the third team. This is the current team you see right now. The post -Tobias Harris trade team. Once again, another “star” player added to the team, and even higher expectations now. Expectations with very little time to reach. Even though Tobias Harris is a seamless fit on really any NBA team, Brett was given another task and challenge. This trade also severely depleted the assets the Sixers once had. As well as the bench. Brett was not only responsible for implementing two new players, but was tasked as well at figuring out the right bench rotation; with very few capable bench players on the roster.
There is no denying Brett’s greatest skill or attribute is his leadership. The players all seem to respect and listen to the coach. And through all of these years and circumstances, Brett has always taken the players’ side. Through all of Joel Embiid’s injuries and health concerns, Brett has been nothing but supportive and a true leader. Through all of the public backlash towards Ben Simmons jump-shot, as well as the Markelle Fultz saga, Brett has been the exact leader an organization would want.
You cannot forget the development behind Robert Covington. Robert Covington went from being undrafted to one of the best role players in the NBA. Brett aided Robert’s development as a player, and it ultimately led to Covington being a big piece in the Jimmy Butler trade.
Perhaps the famous halftime outrage was the biggest act of leadership Brett has shown. Regardless of what was actually said in that moment, the team responded big time to it; tying a playoff record with 51 points in the third quarter of Game 2 against the Brooklyn Nets. That is what a true leader does. Every single player responded to the coach.
After all of the many roster shuffles this season, it looks like this team is in the right place. This team should only improve over time and build chemistry. All of this is anchored with Brett Brown. Brett has shown some improvements in many different ways. He has adjusted both his offensive and defensive schemes to better suit the team and the players. That is a reason you keep the coach around.
Regardless of how the rest of the postseason plays out. Brett has shown enough reasons why you bring him back. Besides, this team who hopefully re-signs the players they acquired via trade, is nowhere near its max potential. A full offseason of work, maybe some key free agent signings for the bench, chemistry, and continuity is the key. And hopefully entering next season, Brett has a Ben Simmons capable of shooting jump-shots, as well as a healthy Embiid. At the very least, Brown deserves one more year.