The former Butler head coach, Brad Stevens, was a college basketball wizard. He led a group of goofy white guys (apologies, Gordon Heyward) to the NCAA championship game in consecutive seasons, instantly becoming the most sought-after coach in college basketball. His knowledge of the game shares few rivals, but his ability to lead a team of grown men pales in comparison. As coach of the Boston Celtics, Brad Stevens is in over his head.
I’ve seen firsthand just how in over his head Brad Stevens is. I scooped seats directly behind the Celtics bench at the Milwaukee Bucks game this past Saturday night for the equivalent of a bag of magical beans, as the Bucks are as terrible as their fans are at making signs:
These people seriously spray-painted “OJ” and “MAYO” on 2 poster boards, and put an orange juice box and a mayonnaise jar on sticks and brought them to the game. Worst. Fans. Ever. Sorry, just had to share that. Now back to Brad Stevens.
The Celtics coach had a blank stare on his face the entire game. He was going through the motions, as I’m sure he realizes the TV cameras are on him at all times, but his players were entirely unresponsive. He’d look over to the bench, say a few words, and they’d go in his players’ ears and out the other. The Celtics players have maybe 5% of the respect for Brad Stevens that they had for Doc Rivers, and I’m probably being generous.
The above photo is after a time-out in the 4th quarter. Can you guess where Brad Stevens is? He’s right behind Kris Humphries’ sweaty mug. The only player giving Stevens the time of day is Vitor Faverani, and I’m not confident he even speaks a lick of English. The lack of command Stevens has over his players is laughable. Poor guy.
I wouldn’t be surprised if Brad Stevens goes home, stares himself down in the mirror, and cries after every single game. He sold out, and he knows it. While I can’t blame the guy for going out and getting that NBA paper, it’s just a shame to see one of college basketball’s most promising young coaches become a shell of himself.