The Last Dance allowed some to discover Michael Jordan a little more in depth, but also to better understand Phil Jackson. One of the best coaches of all time, able to win eleven titles and manage players like Dennis Rodman or the duo Kobe Bryant / Shaquille O’Neal, but also a rather particular man, with strange methods, which can sometimes make coexistence with his players complicated when they are not completely behind him. This is particularly the case of Will lost, three times champion with the Bulls in the first Three Peat, before being sent to the Spurs against Rodman in 1995, where he won an additional title. A move that he didn’t really appreciate at the time, even though his bitterness dissipated with hindsight.
“Jerry Krause ((general manager Bulls at the time) always said he wanted a team with character, but not a sum of characters. I remember when I learned that I was traded, I said to myself, “But wait, Krause says bullshit. He just mounted a trade to get the toughest guy to handle: Dennis Rodman. ” I felt like I was going to miss at least one more title when I left. I started to progress, to become a real player so I was going to have a more important role. But I quickly realized that I was swapped for one of the best players in history when it comes to rebounds and defense. A Hall of Famer. And it was just him against me, so it’s a big compliment. I learned a lot about myself in San Antonio that I probably wouldn’t have learned in Chicago. ” Will Lost.
It must be said that Perdue left the fold of Phil Jackson to find himself under the orders of Gregg Popovich, with whom he won an additional title. Which allows him to compare the two, which are among the very best coaches Of the history.
“I had my problems with Phil. We didn’t always speak frankly, we weren’t always on the same wavelength. I was able to play for Pop, and at that time Dave Cowens (a senior star Celtics editor’s note) was an assistant there. We developed a great friendship, it has done wonders for my career. So in the end, it was win-win. Even though I would have won two more titles by staying in Chicago. Phil saw us as a means to an end. He took it upon himself to make me the best I could be. Same for Horace Grant, Scottie Pippen, Steve Kerr…even Michael Jordan. It was his approach. It allowed the guys to be ultra-motivated, and to play really well. He knew very well what would motivate each guy, he knew very well where to prick so that it hurt. Pop is no longer a father figure. He was always on your back, but he was not afraid to have honest conversations with you. He made sure to have personal relationships with each player in the locker room. He ate with the guys, said to them, “You, you and you, you come with me to Houston, we’re going to a restaurant. Cancel what you have planned. We go to this restaurant, and there is only one rule: we talk about everything, but not basketball. ” I’m not saying Phil is an asshole, it’s just that I don’t know if he had in mind what was best for me. He thought of the team first. Whenever you spoke to Pop, you could see that he had the team’s interest in mind, but also yours. He made us feel like an important part of the equation. Both are great coaches, but they were different. ” Will Lost.
Explanations that make sense when we remember the many times when Pop made his players go to find a better role or sign a better contract in other teams. The latest examples? Boban Marjanovic or Jonathon Simmons.
Via Chicago Sun Times.
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