Stan Van Gundy: Master Of Panic Or Master of Mouthing Off

Stan Van Gundy has always been recognised as one of the NBA’s more eccentric coaches & is well known for his constant yelling from the sidelines during games, this has given him the moniker some believe somewhat unfairly as “The Master of Panic””, but if you look at his 20 plus year career you will see that this coaching style has served him well as he has made the eastern conference three times with two different teams namely the Miami Heat & the Orlando Magic twice culminating in 2008 with a run to the finals losing in 5 games to the Lakers, so there is no doubt that Van Gundy has championship pedigree but there is also a more erratic side to Van Gundy’s nature which has been in full effect over the years but none more so than when he took a shot at NBA commissioner David Stern.

It all started on March 2 2011 when being interviewed by the Orlando Sentinel Van Gundy went on a rant about how he doesn’t like the way the NBA officiates the Magic’s star centre Dwight Howard after a reporter asked him if he thought the NBA’s technical foul system was fair Van Gundy said:

“I can’t answer that. And I certainly can’t have an opinion because David Stern, like a lot of leaders we’ve seen in this world lately, don’t really tolerate other people’s opinions or free speech or anything,” Gundy explained. “So I’m not really allowed to have an opinion, so it’s up to him. He decides. And he likes the system that he has.”

Shortly after that interview was conducted commissioner Stern when asked about the situation with Van Gundy when he appeared on Colin Cowherds radio show he said in response:

“I’m not going to talk to Stan Van Gundy. I’m going to talk to the ownership of the team. (Host: Did it make you angry?) It made me sad. That whatever the pressures are that Stan is feeling that he fell to whatever position he is in to say something like this. It made me sad. I would guess that we’re not going to be hearing from him for the rest of the season. I think when he stops and reads what he said and realizes what he did he will say no more. (Host: What kind of influence can you levy?) I have whatever influence the bylaws and constitution give me and they’re substantial, but I have a feeling that some modicum of self-restraint will cause Stan and the team that he works with to reign in his abhorrent behaviour.”

What I would like to know is do you fellow NBA fans believe that commissioner Stern should take action on Van Gundy for his latest outburst whether it be by fine or suspension of multiple games, I for one believe that this sends a bad message to coaches in the NBA to me it says that it is ok for a coach to question his employer (the NBA) because you will have no action taken against you, in the real world if an employee went on a tirade against their employer you can be sure he would be handed his pink slip & be told to start walking.

If Stern wants to be taken seriously as commissioner he needs to follow the example of NFL commissioner Rodger Goddell whereby if a coach or player steps out of line whether it be on the field of play or off said coach or player’s actions bring the game into disrepute & therefore you will be hit with a hefty penalty be it a fine, suspension of games or both.

It is time for commissioner Stern to step up & show the players & coaches of the NBA that this league does not permit you to do or say whatever you feel like whenever you feel like it just because you make X amount of $ per season, he needs to make them understand that their consequences have actions however big or little the outburst.

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Celtics: Back In The Doldrums After Trade Deadline 2011

After what can only be described as one of the most hectic & some would say shocking trade deadlines in recent NBA history (especially for the Boston Celtics) comes to a close I will have a look at where this once legendary franchise goes from here with head coach Doc Rivers leading the charge.

Its fair to say that in this franchise’s storied history there have been without question hardwood legends on the team at one time or another whether it be a Larry Bird, Robert Parish or a Kevin McHale or even modern day greats such as the 21st century big 3 of Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce & Ray Allen but, no matter what after the events of February 24th 2011 the Boston Celtics may never be the same again.

On February 24th 2011 as the NBA where entering the last days of the trade deadline which saw all the big movers & shakers in the market to make there teams stronger in the post All-Star, Pre-Playoff window which saw the likes of Carmelo Anthony & Chauncey Billups traded from the Denver Nuggets to the New York Knicks, no-one could have foreseen the storm clouds gathering over the TD Bank Garden in Boston where unbeknownst to a coach & fans a great basketball dynasty was about to be ripped apart for the second time in it’s history only this time the coach had no control over the decision.

The decision lay solely at the door of Boston GM Danny Ainge when he set the wheels in motion on February 24th by authorizing the trades of 5 players several of whom are (or where) key players in the Celtics organisation, Here is how the trade panned out for Boston (or didn’t) in most cases:

Traded guard Nate Robinson and centre Kendrick Perkins to the Oklahoma City Thunder for forward Jeff Green, centre Nenad Krstic and a conditional first-round pick. Traded forward Luke Harangody and centre Semih Erden to the Cleveland Cavaliers for a 2013 second-round pick. Traded guard Marquis Daniels and cash to the Sacramento Kings for a protected 2017 second-round pick. Signed centre Chris Johnson to a 10-day contract.

Looking at the above evidence there is no doubt why the fans of the Celtics are up in arms because as you look at the trades that Danny Ainge made that day any fan or basketball analyst will tell you that the only thing Danny Ainge succeeded in doing was making the Celtics weaker rather than stronger heading into the gruelling second half of the season with the major trades of Kendrick Perkins & Nate Robinson to the Oklahoma City Thunder, as a fan I thought that the point of the trade deadline was to trade up & acquire players that will help the team rather than kicking the legs out from under them by trading arguably the best guard & centre in league in Perkins & Robinson & for what a 2013 second-round pick in the draft & a protected 2017 second-round draft pick. At the end of the day what does this all mean?.

Does this spell the end of the Celtics dynasty as we know it or can Doc Rivers hold it together for the final games of the season & take an under strength Celtics team back to the playoffs & possibly back to another NBA Championship thus undoing the mess that as far as fans can see was of Danny Ainge’s own doing.

Only time will tell.