It’s absurd to think the San Antonio Spurs legend would ever lead the Rockets
As a general rule of thumb, we try not to give any space to anything too absurd here at Air Alamo. We’re not going to give you five ways the San Antonio Spurs can trade for Giannis Antetokounmpo because well, let’s be honest, it’s not happening. Let’s stay grounded in some semblance of reality.
But every now and again we will give some air to the absurd, just for kicks. And this summer the absurd rumors that have come up most often around the San Antonio Spurs have been centered around our head coach and leader of the organization, Gregg Popovich.
Earlier in the summer, the rumors were largely about a possible deal between the San Antonio Spurs and Brooklyn Nets that would have sent Pop to Brooklyn to lead Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving in their title chase. There was smoke, several outlets reported similar rumblings about the Nets desire to bring Popovich to lead their team, but Brooklyn would end up settling with Steve Nash.
Now more rumors linking Popovich to an open head coaching job are popping up. And they’re even wilder than before.
Rockets podcast wonders if Gregg Popovich would want to lead Houston
The hosts of the Locked On Rockets podcast recently put out some ideas of who could replace Mike D’Antoni as the head coach of the Rockets. D’Antoni seems unlikely to return and may end up leading another contender like the Philadelphia 76ers next season. This, as the Locked On Rockets hosts noted, would open an attractive head coaching vacancy. One that they’d like Pop to fill.
“If Gregg Popovich were to leave the San Antonio Spurs, there’s not a single other team in the NBA that is as ready-made title contender like the Rockets are. If Gregg Popovich were to leave the Spurs, wanted to leave that rebuilding situation in San Antonio and wanted to give it you know, two, maybe three more years to compete for a couple more titles, what other situation would be better than the Houston Rockets?”
There’s a lot of “if’s” in there but still, the idea that Popovich would remotely consider leaving the San Antonio Spurs to go coach the Rockets is utterly laughable.
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First and foremost, Popovich likes the situation in San Antonio. He said as much after the Spurs regular season ended in the bubble. When asked if he would be returning he responded bluntly, in typical Pop fashion, “Why wouldn’t I?”
He’d later go on to talk at length about how excited he was about the development that the young guys have shown and how proud he was of how the team performed during their final eight games of the season.
And that’s the part of these wild hypotheticals that’s so frustrating. People wonder about the possibilities of Pop leaving the Spurs to go chase rings like he’s some sort of legacy hungry mercenary looking to add a few more rings to his resume before hanging up his clipboard in a few years. As if that’s ever been who he is.
Has it occurred to these people that maybe, just maybe, this is about more than just basketball to Pop? That he might thoroughly enjoy the opportunity he has in front of him to help mold the young players on his team and pass on the teachings that have always been so important to him. That maybe he actually just likes teaching and having an impact on young people, both on the court and off of it.
Maybe in some alternate universe, Gregg Popovich ends up leading James Harden and the Houston Rockets to a championship but not in this reality. He’s coming back to lead the San Antonio Spurs back to the playoffs and that’s just the way it is.