In a news conference today, Stan Van Gundy announced that he is resigning as Miami Heat coach. Stepping in as coach will be current General Manager and previous Head Coach, Pat Riley….
As a loyal heat fan for the last 17 years, I am torn…On the one hand -- I really have grown to like Stan Van Gundy. He is honest and I always seem to respect his comments during post game interviews, etc. On the other hand -- Pat Riley is a coaching legend. I certainly cannot complain that the 3rd most successful coach of all time is taking over the reigns on my favorite team..
What seems to be at the heart of the public debate is whether or not he was FORCED to leave. Today, I watched (via webcast) the entire press conference. In case you missed it, Stan claimed he was resigning due to the lack of flexibility within his role ty to be a family-man… When you read the description “leaving for personal reasons,” I understand why people are skeptical, but after listening to him and hearing specific details – I do believe that he has had enough of the demand of putting his family as a second priority…
This being said, during the press conference, a reporter asked if the fact that the team was 10-11 had anything to do with his decision …. Stan was adamant that this has been a long time coming and had nothing to do with the record…. Sorry, Stan, I don’t buy that…. If they were 15-3, I think you put your inner feelings on hold at least till the end of the season… This coupled with the fact that Pat Riley is clearly an ego-maniac and has been dreaming of coaching again since we landed the Shaq-daddy… Oh and perfect timing – Shaq came back last night….
I think I’m somewhere in the middle of where the purists and the most of main-stream media will be ….
- I am sad to see Stan go, but also have no complaints about Pat Riley being the head coach
- I respect and believe Stan’s rationale, but I don’t think it’s 100% accurate to say that the teams lack of success had nothing to do with it
- I don’t foresee Stan coaching anywhere else other than in South Florida… That includes smaller colleges, high schools or even the Miami Heat again down the road…. His brother left and then came back….
Finally, Stan Van Gundy has consistently been said to look like adult film star, Ron Jeremy, but
I think I he looks more like my buddy Andrew Salis. Hard to say without the mustache, but I think it’s spot on…