Are the Brooklyn Nets pursuing Gregg Popovich?
We’ve heard plenty of Nets-San Antonio-flavored rumors ever since Sean Marks took over, including the potential departure of Spencer Dinwiddie to the Alamo City. But could the Nets instead plunder, rather than be plundered from?
Host Gerald Brown, leading a roundtable with Amin Elhassan, Rasheed Wallace, and Bonzi Wells on “Let’s Get Technical, With Bonzi and Sheed” amplified the rumor that the Nets were preparing a godfather offer for legendary Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich, hence the slow-as-molasses pace of the head coaching search thus far.
Skepticism abounded from the panel, especially Elhassan, about how effective such an offer would be.
The full episode is below, for the sake of context and transparency.
Now, is there any validity to this rumor? It was valid enough to elicit a near-immediate response from GM and former Spurs denizen Sean Marks, at least. On the flip side, that response was a cold-water-dumping denial.
“Pop has a job. So I will say that,” Marks told New York radio station WFAN. “And, obviously, we all know he’s an amazing, amazing coach — and to be quite frank, an even better leader. So I’ll let Pop continue to coach for the Spurs. He owes it to them and they owe it to him. I’m sure he’s quite happy there.”
This conversation began in earnest back in March, when Stephen A. Smith stirred the pot — as he’s wont to do — and hypothesized that Pop was one of very few candidates for the suddenly-open Brooklyn job, which oddly became vacant at the start of the pandemic.
Would Popovich love to coach a healthy Kevin Durant-Kyrie Irving combo, in an ideal world? Sure. But we just can’t see the feasibility of a Pop Swap, especially at this point in his career.
The legendary Spurs head man has done it all, and has dealt with significant personal trauma in recent years, losing his wife Erin in 2018. The 71-year-old and longest-tenured head coach in the NBA seems far more likely to walk away from the game entirely than to leave the relaxation of San Antonio for the bustle of Brooklyn.