San Antonio Spurs: Pros & Cons of Coach Popovich returning
Pros of Pop returning as the San Antonio Spurs head coach
Currently, Coach Pop has racked up the most wins in NBA History, including the regular season and the playoffs. He is the longest-tenured head coach, leading the Spurs to a winning record in all of his first 22 seasons as head coach. He has also coached the United States national team both in FIBA tournaments as well as the Olympics, where he led the team to a bronze medal in 2004.
That is the caliber of coach the Spurs will still have in bringing Pop back. While his accolades should say this for themselves, the Spurs have a legend in Gregg Popovich. He is one of, if not the best, to ever do it. Along with his legendary status in terms of accomplishments, Pop also brings a reputation for adapting to the ever-changing landscape of the NBA. Pop has shown that he can evolve, even in today's NBA that is markedly different from that of 1996, the year Popovich replaced Bob Hill as the commander in chief of the silver and black.
Even before his head coaching gig, Pop was the GM and VP of Basketball Operations for the Spurs back in ’94 when Peter Holt purchased the club. To this day, Coach Pop still serves as the Spurs President of Basketball Operations and brings experience to the team that is invaluable and irreplaceable.
Considering all of this, it's no wonder the Spurs haven’t jumped on the coaching carousel during the offseason. There simply has not been a need for a new, likely less-experienced coach. As the saying goes, "if it ain't broke, don’t fix it." If Pop does decide to return, the Spurs retain all these things and keep that familiar leader the city of San Antonio loves so dearly. On paper, the players win, the fans win, all is well, and everyone is happy.
That said, basketball is still a business, and the real burning question is whether or not the Spurs make the playoffs next year if he does decide to return. Even with the accolades, experience, and familiarity that he brings, making the playoffs is no longer a given with the current roster.