Gregg Popovich Says He’d ‘Last About A Month’ Coaching The Philadelphia 76ers

As happy as Gregg Popovich is that his friend and former assistant coach Brett Brown has a team of his own, he doesn’t envy Brown’s current position. As Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer reports:

Gregg Popovich called close friend and former assistant Brett Brown the most positive person he knows. Then the San Antonio Spurs coach admitted that he couldn’t hold Brown’s job as the 76ers coach.

“I’d last about a month,” Popovich said. “And he, honest to God, loves coaching that team.”

What Brown, Sam Hinkie and the Philadelphia 76ers are trying to do is exactly what Popovich and the Spurs did in 1997: luck into a generational superstar, build around him, and win multiple championships. Sounds easy, right?

But there’s a big difference between the Sixers’ current approach (at once affectionately and derisively referred to as “The Process”) and that of the Spurs nearly 20 years ago. Even if the Sixers get a generational star in next year’s draft (or if Joel Embiid ever gets healthy and becomes the player they hope he’ll be), they’re still far away from sniffing the playoffs. There are too many holes on their roster, and they won’t be able to fill all of them in just one or two seasons. Brown’s done a terrific job, something not at all reflected by his 37-137 record, but there’s only so much he can do with what he’s been given.

When the Spurs landed Tim Duncan, it immediately changed the course of the franchise. But they already had a playoff-bound roster in place with All-Star and former MVP, David Robinson. The presence of ancillary role players besides Duncan — and a just-past-his-prime David Robinson, ensured immediate title contention when they lucked into the No. 1 overall pick. And San Antonio was only in the lottery because The Admiral was banged up for most of the year before. If the Spurs hadn’t won the lottery and drafted Duncan, who knows where Popovich would be right now.

(Philadelphia Inquirer)