Death, taxes, and first-round losses

“By the end of the 2003 baseball season I had learned something from publishing Moneyball. I learned that if you look long enough for an argument against reason you will find it.”Michael Lewis, author of Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game

I’ve been watching George Karl coach basketball for close to a decade now. During this time it’s never occurred to me that Karl is a great basketball coach. I’ve been frustrated with his decisions more often than I’ve been pleased. There have been times that I’ve appreciated his work — this past season certainly stands out — but not once during Karl’s tenure have I come to the realization that he’s a great basketball coach.

The problem: Many people disagree with me. Lots of people, much more knowledgeable about the game of basketball than I, think of Karl as one of the best coaches to have ever walked the Earth.

This, I cannot understand. I’ve come to appreciate Karl over the years — or perhaps, tolerate some of his methods. I recognize his accomplishments and by no means consider him a bad coach. I know he’s a good coach. But that’s the difference between the divide of fans that currently occupies Nuggets Nation: one side sees him as good, but replaceable; the other side as great, and irreplaceable.

No matter how hard I try, I simply cannot not understand the other side of the argument. Every postseason I’ve watched for the last nine years the Nuggets have collapsed at some level. They never give it all they can. From the early years when Kenyon Martin and Carmelo Anthony got in feuds with Karl on the sidelines, to the fourth quarter of Game 5 in the 2009 Western Conference Finals when the Nuggets flat-lined and never recovered. Even last year when the Nuggets pushed the Lakers to Game 7 in the first round, there was a decisive point around the early part of the fourth quarter where you just knew the Nuggets were going to lose. This feeling — knowing the Nuggets are going to lose — is something I’ve felt throughout Karl’s tenure and often when it matters most. In the world I’ve come to know, great coaches don’t give you this type of feeling. Great coaches win when it matters most. Great coaches spit in the face of adversity and thrive when the chips are down. Karl has never been that type of coach. Yet these are things only I know, because I’ve experienced them. There is no way to quantify the disgust in the pit at the bottom of your stomach; and there is no way to truly quantify how good of a coach George Karl really is.

As long as the Nuggets and the national media endorse George Karl, I feel I’m waging a losing battle. Though I will never concede my position on Karl — after all, it’s taken me nearly a decade to form it — I’m still interested in the other side of the argument and what they see that I don’t. I know that while with the Nuggets Karl has not been a great coach, yet many point to his overall career accomplishments as the reason for his high standing in their eyes. So, in order to put myself in their shoes and see their side of the argument I had to look at Karl’s career prior to arriving in Denver, as that’s supposedly the genesis for much of his “greatness.” Unfortunately for the other side of the argument, I didn’t find too much greatness.

Prior to his stint with the Nuggets, George Karl had a successful career in the NBA but by no means was he on the brink of achieving the incredibly esteemed status he sees today. He had made a trip to the NBA Finals and won 708 games but he’d also been fired four times, lost in the first round of the playoffs as a 1 seed and had numerous feuds with his star players. Today, Karl apologists rave over the number of games he’s won. In fact, that’s their go-to argument when defending him against virutally any criticism thrown his way. However, prior to joining the Nuggets his 708 wins placed him 16th all time between Gene Shue and John MacLeod. Yes, the Gene Shue and MacLeod you’ve likely never heard of if you were born after 1990. In no way was Karl seen as the type of coach he is today, which suggests something monumental must have occurred over his near decade-long tenure with the Nuggets.

The problem?

It hasn’t.

Nearly 40 percent of all the games Karl has won in his career have come while with the Nuggets. Yet in that time he’s advanced past the first round of the playoffs only once. One could argue the only reason Karl’s stuck around Denver as long as he has is because Denver is not Boston, nor Philly, nor New York, god forbid. In Denver, the only expectations Karl’s had have been not guiding his team to complete and utter collapse in the regular season. Yet somehow, someway, over this time the perception of Karl has changed from “Good NBA Coach with 708 Wins, Sandwiched Between Gene Shue and John MacLeod,” to “Great NBA Coach with Over 1,000 Wins and 22 Playoff Appearances.” However, do a little work, read between the lines a bit, and it becomes quite clear that “1,000 wins” is an awful argument for Karl’s greatness — if you hadn’t noticed already.

Here are the reasons:

  • At the rate Karl is going he could coach the Nuggets until the year 2022 and have advanced past the playoffs only twice.
  • Of the top 10 coaches in NBA history, Karl has the lowest playoff winning percentage of them all.
  • Karl has never won Coach of the Year or an NBA championship.
  • Karl has lost in the first round of the playoffs 14 of the 22 years (or roughly 64 percent of the time) he’s qualified.
  • Karl is one of five NBA coaches to have lost in the first round of the playoffs as a 1 seed.
  • Karl was fired twice in his first four seasons as an NBA head coach.
  • Karl is repeatedly left off the NBA GM survey of the best coaches in the league (however his offense remains ever so popular!).
  • The Nuggets have won only one of their last 14 playoff games on the road.
  • 62 teams over the last 40 years have won at least 30 of their final 40 regular season games. Nine of them lost in the first round. Karl coached three of those teams.
  • Karl has failed to get out of the first round with home-court advantage four of the 10 times he’s had it.
  • Karl has reached  the Conference Finals only four of the nine times he’s had a top three seed in his conference.
  • Karl has reached the NBA Finals only one of the six times he’s been a top two seed in his conference.
  • No coach in NBA history has lost in the first round more than Karl. The second most first-round loses behind Karl belong to Jerry Sloan and Lenny Wilkens who each have nine.

The above bullet points are not opinion. They are facts. George Karl owns no NBA championship; instead he owns some of the most undesirable postseason records in NBA history. Karl has many regular season wins, yes, but what does he have to show for it? Regular season wins mean nothing if you collapse every year and turn into a different team in the postseason. If regular season wins were the measure of a great coach, then Don Nelson would be the greatest of them all. Don Nelson, however, has no NBA championship. What he does have, is three more Coach of the Year awards and 11 less first-round losses than George Karl — which must be good for something.

All these years Nuggets fans have been in love with someone who does not exist. George Karl is not the knight in shining armor who has saved the Nuggets from the depths of franchise misery. He’s done a fantastic job pulling the Nuggets from obscurity to relevancy (along with other figures, namely Carmelo Anthony), but he has been unable to take them any further. George Karl is a regular season win master and postseason wreck. At some point the Denver Nuggets organization will have to take the next step forward if they desire to be successful in other aspects of basketball besides just winning in the regular season. Of course, because Karl has presided over the most successful era in franchise history many fans erroneously attribute the Nuggets success solely with him. These uniformed types often argue perhaps the most ignorant of all the baseless claims for retaining Karl: that he is THE best option on the market. Oddly enough they’ve been arguing this same recycled point for the last five years or so, during which time the following coaches have become available:

  • Larry Brown: Has lost only seven times in the first round. Has lost only twice in the first round as a higher seed in his near 30-year NBA career. Has made it to the NBA Finals three times and won once — without a “superstar.”
  • Rick Carlisle: Has made the playoffs nine of the 11 years he’s coached. Has lost in the first round only three times and on his current pace would lose in the first round six times in 22 years, as apposed to Karl’s 14. Has made one less trip to the Conference Finals than Karl in half the time and has already won an NBA championship. Has lost as a higher seed in the playoffs only once.
  • Stan Van Gundy: Has made the playoffs every year he’s coached a full season. Has lost in the first round only twice. Has already made three Conference Finals appearances and one NBA Finals appearance in seven full years as an NBA head coach.
  • Rick Adelman: Had made the playoffs 16 of his 20 season coaching prior to taking the Minnesota Timberwolves head coaching position. Has lost in the first round eight times. Has lost as a higher seed in the first round only once. Has made the Conference Finals four times and NBA Finals twice.
  • Tom Thibodeau: Won Coach of the Year and made the Conference Finals in his first season as an NBA head coach. Tied the record for most wins by a rookie head coach. Became the fastest coach in NBA history to 100 wins.

The above list doesn’t even include bright, young coaches like Monty Williams, Frank Vogel or Erik Spoelstra. It also omits more seasoned but successful coaches like Lionel Hollins, Jeff Van Gundy and Nate McMillan. To think any one of these coaches would have anything but success with the types of rosters Karl has had over the years is ill informed to the highest degree. Other up-and-coming coaches who seem destined for stardom include Golden State assistant Mike Malone — whom Mark Jackson insisted upon having by his side before accepting his current position — and my favorite, Memphis Grizzlies assistant Dave Joerger, whom many feel is responsible for the Grizzlies’ dominance on the defensive side of the basketball in recent years.

After setting out to do my research I was excited — and interested. I thought I was finally, truly going to discover something great hidden in Karl’s past, the reason why people praise him the way they do. I thought I was going to find the logic behind why Karl put a 6-foot journeyman point guard on Kobe Bryant in the Western Conference Finals (which resulted in Bryant shooting 55 percent from the field throughout the series as opposed to 47 percent with A.C. off the floor) and why he would later put perhaps the worst defender in all of basketball on the Warriors’ best player in the first round of the playoffs this year when he already had one of the best wing defenders in the game. But, I found no such evidence. Instead, all I found was more information to corroborate my already less-than-stellar idea of who Karl is as a coach. I had my gut instincts, which I had obtained from nine years of first-hand viewing, and now I had history on my side as well. Gut instincts you can argue with; history you cannot.

The Nuggets loyalty to George Karl is something I will never understand. When most coaches get three strikes, Karl gets nine lives. Had he not had a prior record coming into Denver, had he not had a name to run on and had you simply judged his performance based on his on-court decisions and record, there’s no way on God’s green Earth that the coach who has resided over this franchise for the last 10 years makes it this far. More than anything, Karl is an addiction the Nuggets cannot quit. He’s a security blanket for a franchise too afraid to take the next step in their development as a real-deal franchise and force to be reckoned with. Again, Karl is a good coach. There’s no doubt about that. But he has limitations and succeeding in the postseason is one of them. If the Nuggets want to take that next step, it starts with finding someone who has a proven track record of winning when it matters most. Karl is simply not that man.

But, if there’s one thing I’ve learned about the Nuggets over the last decade it’s that Karl’s going nowhere until Karl decides he wants to go. So, I’ll see you next year at almost this exact same time: same article, different words.

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Kalen Deremo

Kalen was born in Durango, CO, in 1988 and graduated from Metropolitan State University of Denver in 2013 with a degree in journalism. He's now an itinerant hoping to travel as much as possible before eventually succumbing to the "real world." Aside from writing Kalen likes movies, music, spicy food and the great outdoors. Edward Abbey is his current idol.
  • Blue

    Great read on the situation Kalen.

    • Thomas

      Congrats, excellent piece. Refreshing.

      The worst part of it is that Nuggets brass is once again sending the message that there is no accountability, that names are more important than postseason results, that they don’t care about real fans.

      The last part is the most disturbing. By keeping things as is after yet another disappointment, the Kroenke’s are telling us that championships are not the objective, the bottom line is. Kroenke Jr said it himself 6 months ago, what a joke.

      That’s why this franchise is dead weight and that real, hardcore fans that make the true character of a team and a city become scarce as they fall by the wayside.

      No real fan can endure this lack of reasoning for this long. You have to have the title “carrot” dangling in front of the real fan, or at least within sight. If you take away that title “carrot”, you lose the real fan. Once the real fan is gone, you are relegated to being an occasional tourist attraction, a second tier team, not a legitimate contending sports team.

      All these years of Nuggets basketball and our highlight is still Mutombo’s 94 upset, how ridiculous. Not one title, not even a western conference. If we continue on this path, the next 30 years will be pretty much like the last 30.

      I’ve read perhaps 30-50 fan comments stating that they are not going to watch or spend anymore if GK stays. It’s just pointless for a real fan.

      Wake up, Kroenke’s. Enormous mistake being made and it will cost you dearly. Fire George Karl.

      • Chris

        You, me and everyone who comments here began to believe that championship carrot was within reach by the time Gallo went down this season. Your arguments are valid—but the Nuggets ownership achieved their goal, and we all bought it, so why make the change if it’s going to incur additional costs?

    • mike

      Ugghhh Kalen. Im at work right now and don’t feel like wasting a lunch on this, but suffice to say I am going to crush this later on. I will say roster contextualization is key and you seem to make none of that.
      Also, I think you are overestimating both the rosters of Denver and the value others see in Karl (and the numerous crappy coaches in the league and how crappy the past coaches of the nuggets have been… Other than Larry Brown and Doug Moe over 2 decades ago (and Moe is a pretty equivalent coach actually) it has been trash. If I were Van Gundy I wouldn’t touch this roster unless their are significant upgrades.

      • Fed up Nug

        Shut up theo, you aren’t fooling anyone.

        • mike

          actually apparently I am fooling you because I haven’t seen that guy on here in a while. Im the one who crushes googer with rational argument and stats on a regular basis and when he can’t come up with a rational response he calls me a troll. I disagreed with theo some and agreed with him some. so I won’t take it as a compliment or disparaging comment. If you read on a sixth grade level you could tell the difference between our writing though “F”ed up nug. Im much less derogatory unless people tell me to “shut up” like a 3rd grader

          • Fed up Nug

            Even if you’re not theo, you may as well be. You’re both insufferable tools that aren’t even half as smart as you keep insisting.

            Looking forward to you “crushing” Kalen’s post.

            • mike

              wah. “F”ed up Stop being obnoxious and disrespectful (“shut up”) and I wont treat you like that. And Kalen is the one who referred to people who disagree with him as “ignorant” and “uninformed”

              Here are some facts:
              Prior to Karl coming the Nuggets had a total of 3 50 win seasons.
              With Karl they have 5 of 6 (and 66 game season in only missed season)
              The nuggets last made the WCF in 1985 prior to Karl. (and obviously the 2010 team was better than 2009 because they actually had a wing who could play defense but Karl’s illness got in the way).
              2005 before Karl 17-25 post Karl 32-8

              Prior to Karl the nuggets had made the playoffs 3 of 14 times. Made it every year with Karl. The only team to do that in that time period is San Antonio. Other teams missing once: Chicago, Lakers, Mavs and Heat. And of course Karl has done this without 1 top 10 guy in the league on his team.

              As has been said numerous times: With the nuggets this is the first series Karl has lost that his team had the worse regular season record (other than Utah 2010 when Karl wasn’t coaching). This higher seed stuff is disingenuous argument stuff that proves you are being manipulative as the Clippers were a better record team. PS you may not have wanted to wait for the game 1 with the Warriors/SPurs showing clearly GSW is MUCH better team than previously though. This team’s talent is not and has not been in the top 5 in the league other than the chauncey years which was really 1 season with Karl that they got to the WCF.

              Killing Karl for putting Carter on Kobe forgets what actually happened in that series. Let’s put aside the fact that Carter played an average of TEN minutes a game in the series. Melo was getting crushed in the 5-10 minutes a game he played Kobe (with multiple fouls). Dahntay Jones averaged a foul every 3 minutes in the first three games of the series with flagrants too. He was atrocious on D and offense. JR smith on Kobe is laughable. THEY HAD NO ONE to guard Kobe because the roster didn’t have a player able to do that at even an average ability. Karl was just grasping at straws as he was with Miller on Curry. It was a bad choice without a good one. Go look up the stats on Melo in that series. He was atrocious after game 2 from the field. Those are the two reasons they lost

              Killing Karl for having spats with Melo and Martin is silly at best. Martin is a constant malcontent with delusional thoughts of his value on his team. Melo is stubborn poor facilitator who takes bad shots and has always refused to play effortful defense.

              In years you can make a legit claim Karl’s team’s have been top 5 in talent in the league (93-97 in Seattle; 2009 in Denver) He has made 2 WCF. 1 Finals appearance. 2 game 7 losses in Semi Finals and 2 first round losses.

              He’s a good not a top 10 or 20 all-time coach. No one who knows basketball would claim this. Adelman is pretty equivalent and the context of talent is exactly what I was referring to earlier. Portland had great talent in the early 90s. Sacremento in the 00s was much more talented than any team run out by the Nugs ever. In his last 7 years Carlisle has missed the playoffs 2 times gone out in the first round 3 times. The assistants you name may or may not be better. It’s guesswork. You are right to look at guys who are defensive oriented assistants (as I have said on this site in the past), but it’s still very hit and miss. But this team doesn’t have even an Average defensive big. All the guys you reference constantly have a dominant big to anchor their defense . (And of course it is disingenuous of you again to put out Van Gundy as us “ignorant” people have clearly stated he would be worth letting Karl go)
              Karl probably needs a caddy as a defensive assistant coach, but it doesn’t matter who they get until they get at least an above average big to anchor the defense on they are swimming upstream on that stuff.

              Look it’s just more whining scapegoating for this team clearly ignoring the talent level on this team When your best player isn’t top 10 and second best player is Camby/Andre Miller, Iverson at the end of his career, or Ty Lawson you are going to be unlikely to get out of the 2nd round. The “ignorant” people on this site have been saying there is not enough talent on this team to expect it to beat another comparable team with an all-star or two (Spurs, OKC, Mem, LAC, probably/surprisingly GSW). It’s nice that you can be so irrepressibly optimistic about the talent of Ty and Mcgee and Faried and Chandler and Brewer. But other people who have been more realistic about their strengths and weaknesses said it was a nice team doomed to a maximum level as a 2nd round team. If you don’t want to admit you are wrong about the talent that’s your business. But that doesn’t justify disparaging others and being unrealistically negative about Karl.

              “After setting out to do my research I was excited — and interested. I thought I was finally, truly going to discover something great hidden in Karl’s past, the reason why people praise him the way they do.” Please don’t write this type of false stuff. You have been negative about Karl the whole season other than the great run in February/April and even then you have been measured and qualifying your praise. You went out of your way to present ZERO positive factors about Karl. It’s a DISHONEST line. Even us “uninformed” folks aren’t stupid enough to believe that.

              • https://twitter.com/PrincePickaxe Kalen

                Thanks for the response. You clearly did a lot of research there. Few things:

                — I did not call people ignorant, I called their argument ignorant. Big difference.

                — My article was written out of necessity, about something that needed to be said; it appears your response was written out of a need to protect Karl and/or bring to light the more “positive” aspects of his career in Denver, as you clearly mention. The Nuggets are in the business of winning ball games; RMC is in the business of analyzing those games. Two days ago we published an article about why Karl should not be fired. Did you read that article? That is where the “positivity” you’re seeking likely lies. I am simply arguing the other side of the coin. And just to be clear, I have given Karl positive grades all season long (as have every one of our writers) and praised his coaching along the way. He wasn’t doing that great of a job early on, therefore I did not give him good grades. We analyze things on a game-by-game basis. To be upset with me for not praising him ALL season long clearly displays your loyalty for him as a coach, which I obviously do not share. Because the fact is, Karl wasn’t great ALL season long. And FYI: I voted for him second in my ESPN Coach of the Year poll. Next year I’ll be sure to include that in my article for “positive” effect.

                — I can’t even tell you how much I disagree about the talent appraisal. Melo was a top 10 player when Karl had him. Karl’s had three Hall of Famers in Denver (Melo, Chauncey and AI), all in their primes or close to it. How is it that the Nuggets finished with the fourth best record in the league this year in the regular season, yet once they lost in the first round all that talent suddenly flew out the window? Come on now. You can’t have it both ways. You don’t win 57 games without a hell of a lot of talent. Lawson averaged something like 21 and 9 in the postseason. That’s damn close to a star.

                — Saying Karl was “grasping at straws” when he put Miller on Curry is the epitome of letting him off the hook. You’re just giving him a free pass for terrible coaching there. That decision was such a game-changer. When you’re coaching the playoffs — between all the preparation, analysis, methodology, etc. — if you find yourself grasping at straws all series, as you say Karl was, well, that’s all the evidence in the world you need to prove Karl isn’t a great coach and failed miserably yet again in the playoffs. Sorry, but you said it yourself.

                — For me, this one does it: “When your best player isn’t top 10 and second best player is Camby/Andre Miller.” Wait, WHAT?!?! Did you not see the virtual sabotage he attempted on the Nuggets the last half of the season, which culminated in the playoffs??? Saying Andre Miller was the second best player on this team suggests two things: either you didn’t watch a whole lot of Nuggets basketball or you’re George Karl. Because I have a gut feeling you’re not Karl, I would say try and watch some more games next year and continue to read RMC, as we were on to Miller from the start.

                Again, thanks for reading, and thanks for responding with an well-thought-out argument. I greatly appreciate it.

                — Kalen

              • Charlie

                Good comment mike, but Karl was not grasping at straws with Miller on Curry.

                To do that you are saying he was essentially devoid of other options, which couldn’t be further from the truth. Just look up and down this roster. There are at least 4 other rotation players better suited to guarding Curry.

                Karl entered into a conscious, strategic decision to use Miller the way he did against GSW.

                I don’t agree with the AC argument either but at least there is a little more to that one.

              • mike

                I was referring to miller/camby as second best in the pre-Iverson era to Melo. I guess you could say Martin too… but none really stood out from the other. Miller is clearly not even top 6 on this current team. We’ll chalk up the rest of your paragraph to mis-communication as I have watched many nugs games in person and on tv.

                I probably should have clarified i have said a few times in previous threads Miller on Curry was unacceptable. I just wanted to reiterate that no one was stopping him other than iguodala which meant Thompson was going to crush them. Curry had already gotten it going before Miller came in, Miller defense just exacerbated the issue. Karl tried something and it failed . He should have pulled the plug 2 plays in instead of 7-9 though. That’s essentially the only legit complaint on Karl in this series (especially when you see what GSW did in San Antonio) Losing a 4 minute stretch when the other team already had an 8 point lead (up from 4 points 40 seconds earlier) doesn’t make him a bad coach. Three of curry’s shots in that stretch (as I recall) had nothing to do with miller as one was transition and another was a 29 footer. Karl had a series of bad choices for a hot curry.

                Not sure what to tell you about your perception of Melo. PER isn’t the end all be all as it really doesn’t take defense into account very well but it does do offense VERY well and is skewed to high volume scorers like melo. And melo has probably never even been average on the defensive end so PER probably overestimates his ability. Not once in his career with the nuggets was he top 10 in PER. Melo’s regular season PER finished with Karl in the last 4 years that Karl coached them in the playoffs.
                ’06-21st in league
                07-19
                08-20
                09-33 (played much better in playoffs, injuries?)

                2013 was the first year he was top 10 and due to 3 point shooting and a ridiculously high usage rate. (and he’s been trash in the playoffs so far, it was the run at the end that pushed him into the top 10 so maybe just regression to the mean for the playoffs?)

                Either way by WS/48 or PER it is very difficult to make a contention Melo was even a top 10 offensive player in the league during his run in Denver and when you take into account his mediocre defense it’s not really a debate.

                Iverson Im going to disagree with you fully on “near prime” Given he could barely get a job in the league the season after he was traded by the Nuggets I would say he was significantly beyond prime. He was another high volume POOR defense hero ball guy like melo. Even in prime it would have been a poor match because of Iverson’s poor 3 point shooting but with his obviously slower skills and ALWAYS poor defense… He is a likely HOF but he was a shell of that by the time he got to the Nuggets (hence they shipped him out after 1.75 seasons) Plus he was another malcontent non-leader like Martin.

                Not to mention Iverson is one of the most overated players in the History of the NBA. It’s hard to find a comparison as very few players shoot at his volume with his relative inefficiency of scoring. Monta ellis or Lou Williams is an apt comparison if they took another 7 shots a game (Im not kidding look up their rate stats, Lou and Monta actually have a better career TS% so far although with less volume) You can have a whole series of articles on the value of Iverson being overrated because of that 2001 season and the eastern conference, but suffice to say I think his HOF candidacy should be rather questionable though it will not be.

                Chauncey you are correct on and as I implied the 1 season Melo and he were in the playoffs together with Karl I felt they were a top 5 talented team in the league and they went to the WCF. Sounds about right to me. (especially given they had zero above average perimeter defenders)

                I do appreciate that your response to me was level headed and respectful. I was overly combative especially when “F”ed up gave his too cents. STILL
                “ignorant” idea and ignorant person in conjunction with misinformed person is really not vast. sorry. The clear sentiment was if you feel Karl would be hard to replace with someone who is better you’re not smart (obviously everyone agreeing van gundy is the exception) You don’t read “misinformed” and ignorant in the same sentence to describe a dissenting opinion and get the impression your intelligence is respected.

              • Fed up Nug

                I’m sorry, but all you’ve really done here is rehash every tired excuse Karl apologists have been using for years.

                Nothing is his fault, all his teams suck, look at all his regular season wins (yay!), can’t expect to win as an underdog, can’t expect to win as a favorite, all the terrible in game decisions he makes are understandable, blah blah blah.

                You’ve falsely attributed the regular season “success” that the ownership has given us solely to Karl. We made the playoffs the year before Karl and we will make them after him as long as the front office is capable of assembling a decent roster.

                Also, this whole over achievement myth you keep trying to peddle is pathetic. This team was universally expected to be great and was just 3 wins away from the first seed. Turn three of any of the ridiculous losses to the Wizardsx2, Wolvesx2, Sixers, Magic, Suns, Celtics, Nets, Hornets, Mavs or Jazz and all of a sudden we’re the best in the west. This team actually slightly underachieved.

                And Golden State was NOT the better team, if they were, they wouldn’t have won 10 less games than us and wouldn’t have been the overwhelming underdogs. The series wasn’t lost on talent, it was lost due to a multitude of Karl’s bad decisions. Starting Koufos over McGee all year, letting scrub Brewer play instead of developing Fournier and Hamilton, putting all his eggs in the basket of our washed up 37 year old back up point guard, going on a bad small ball acid trip from the second half of game 2 to 4 only to wake up in game 5 to a lost series.

                Suffice to say, you “crushed” nothing here. In the future, if you don’t want insults and disrespect hurled at you, try to be less of a boastful ass.

              • mike

                Thanks for your reply F”ed up. OBVIOUSLY if you have chosen to watch any of the Spurs games this week you have a more clear understanding of just how good GSW are right now with Curry, Thompson and Bogut leading the team. I hope you go onto Spurs sites and Call for Popovich to get fired too. Im sorry I was able to discern that significantly before you were, but that isn’t really my “fault.” Other than Bogut playing much better of recent I can’t really tell you why the warriors were just a good team in the regular season and stellar now. Their defense has been stronger and possibly they are hitting 3s at a higher rate than expected (read that as luck). That and they are a team that has limited depth (especially without David Lee) so they can play Their best players an extra 5-10 minutes a game in the playoffs taking away minutes from replacement level players like Richard Jefferson.

                You gave no statistics. and no coherent arguments. I gave numerous of those which YOU CAN NOT refute with statistical evidence or you would have done so. Called something a “myth” that is statistically proven that Karl team’s wins outperform their +/- (see the article below ). Just because you misunderstand the relative talent of players on this team doesn’t mean that I do (and Kalen misunderstands the value of Melo and AI in their Denver years.) When you clearly overestimate the talent on the team what other response needs to be made.

                I haven’t said I think Karl is a great coach. He did a great job during the regular season and was merely OK in the playoffs given the talent and streakiness of this team (who were shooting poorly other than Iguodala). He’s a good coach and unless you intend to get a great one (Van Gundy) then it is a crapshoot. Given prior to Karl the nuggets went on a run of crappy coach after crappy coach I would guess the next unestablished one has a good shot at that too.

    • mike

      http://insider.espn.go.com/nba/story/_/id/9250250/nba-why-george-karl-nba-most-disappointing-playoff-coaches

      Oh and check this little article out. As I was telling googer in the prior thread the nuggets have overacheived BECAUSE of Karl. The article spends the entire first 2/3 trashing Karl’s playoff record and then comes to the conclusion that in fact his team’s just overachieve consistently in the regular season making them look like a better team than they are. Therefor making fans disappointed by losses that really are quite reasonable.

  • George “Gentlemen, just run” Karl

    Kalen great, great article. It pisses me off when espn analysis, Charles barkly and the rest of those TNT guys, people in the local media like Vic Lombardi or a couple of people on twitter that have over 100k of tweets, say that “George Karl is a great coach or losing against the warriors wasn’t his fault”. He is not a great coach and the majority of the blame is his!! I just hope he resigns before his cotract is up!! Even if we make have another 1st exit next year the organization still won’t fire him!! And it makes me have headaches to think that we are ganna have to go another year with his idiotic rotations, playin miller too much (if he stays), playing mind games with j ham and Javale, and getting out coaches in the playoffs!! I just want this over occurring nightmare to end….

  • S

    Outstanding article Kalen. The fact people still defend him after this year is truly baffling.

  • Duane

    All you need to know about Karl is that he couldn’t get along with and coach Ray Allen in Milwaukee….that on top of Carmelo and all his other battles in Denver tells you what you need to know about Karl…it is all about him so he won’t resign he will have to be fired.

  • Forret

    This conclusion is fine, as long as you avoid the weight of actual numbers, and as long as you have a completely delusional conception of what is possible given the roster of the last decade.

    The playoff games constitute a tiny portion of the total. Yet this analysis puts this tiny number of games on par with the enormous number of games Karl has actually won.

    You can’t advance in the playoffs if you’re not there. With the rag-tag assortment of players the Nuggets have had to work with, most coaches would not have achieved the playoffs in the West for most of this past decade.

    “Ah, but!” you say, “With a more playoff-minded coach, we would at least have had a shot at the championship in the few times we would have made the playoffs!”

    Oh indeed. A seventh- or eighth-seed Nugget team would surely have won it all in the West under a better playoff coach.

    How can you delude yourself?

    The fact is simply that the Nuggets have not yet compiled a team capable of the championship.

    With Karl, you have had perennial playoff appearances. If we had had a better playoff coach, you may have had 2 appearances in the second round.

    The whole argument revolves around the preposterous idea that the Nuggets could have had a championship season in the past decade with a different coach. If you believe that, please give me a call, I’ve got some other hot deals for you.

    • Rdc

      You make valid points, maybe your right in saying that the nuggets havent yet assembled a team within the past 10 years that could have a shot at a championship. But, thats not the point. The point was that these nuggets teams had all the talent in the world to make it past the first round, at least. And that is on george karl and his double standards, rotations that feature miller/carter, you name it, everyone that visits this site can.
      Having said this, personally i would not mind for george karl to have yet another shot at coaching this nuggets team next season, his contract runs out next season, and it should be his final chance as a coach next season. What will it take for another extension? I think at the very least, a game 7 or 6 at the semis. But this is only my opinion. Feel free to argue.

      • Fraser

        I’m with you- let Karl have the final season of his contract.. but with a caveat.

        Take Andre Miller away.

        With no Miller there would be no small ball where defense is sacrificed. There would be no pounding the rock instead of running. There would be no iso-hero ball for the last qtr.

        We have a good deep team, maybe as good as we have ever had under Karl’s reign. Let him have the final year of his contract, but make sure he does not have his vice- YMCAndre

        • Thomas

          Karl will create his own crutches, he always has, always will. If it’s not Miller, it is Al Harrington, it’s Rudy. He will always find his veterans that are inefficient, that fit his failed views of playoff basketball.

          Naive to think that Masai can steer GK in the right direction. He is still the coach, his “strategies” are still worthless.

        • Forret

          I agree about Miller. Andre is an excellent guard; but when the ball is in his hands on this team, it is no longer a disruption/transition/score-in-the paint team. And that’s the only team they can be right now.

      • Thomas

        That is exactly why the Nuggets are not in the conversation when discussing NBA contending teams, NBA player destination teams – “give him another” year, poor coach, he caught bad breaks maybe next year he does better.

        This is a business. The product is the fan. Carlesimo was fired on the spot, other coaches were fired on the spot after season end – it’s a part of business.

        During the job interview, the coach has to be asked if he can take the team deep in the playoffs, if he has what it takes to win it all. What was asked from George Karl during his job interview?

        – We want you to do well in the regular season, you won’t be judged by the playoffs.

        I hope not, because that is what kills franchises from a real fan perspective.

        As long as people continue to pay for Altitude sports on cable, Kroenke doesn’t care if we win or lose in the playoffs – that’s his cash cow that compensates for any financial shortcomings on the Nuggets that may arise from waning fan interest.

        Take away Altitude and perhaps he has to act in the best interest of fans.

        I think it’s a lost cause.

        • Forret

          Which Nugget roster, during Karl’s time in Denver, do you think was capable of winning a championship?

          Serious question.

          • Mike K

            Have you looked at the Knicks roster this year? How is it that the VERY SAME PLAYERS Karl coached here but couldn’t succeed are in the 2nd round (and got there easily, I might add). What has Mike Woodson done with those players that Karl could not? Karl must lack something in his coaching or his personality that makes those very same players WANT to play and WANT to win that they didn’t do here.

            THAT roster could have competed in the West.

            • LBJ

              The Knicks would have been lucky to get the #8 seed in the West. They would have been blown off the court in round #1 by OKC.

              Let’s see if they can beat Indiana before we start talking about how great they are.

              I seem to remember them playing in Denver. How did that came turn out???

            • Forret

              The Knicks won in the first round because they were playing the Celtics — a team that couldn’t even conceive of the playoffs in the West.

              • LBJ

                Andre Miller would have added quickness and speed to the Celtics….

    • Evan S

      The Nuggets made the playoffs every year Karl has been here because that also was the same year the Nuggets drafted the best player in franchise history.
      These were very talented teams led by Melo that never put an emphasis on defense.
      Also the 2009 team was a couple inbounds passes away from the finals where they would have been the favorite versus the Magic. But I guess inbounds plays shouldn’t be a coaches job.

  • Charliemyboy

    Ownership makes the money from seats and a winning team; NBA is about skills translated to money. (that is a period.) Ownership likes Karl. Your opinion is noted and put to rest, at least for one more year. Charles Barkley and Karl Malone are not great because they have no rings? Your logic follows this sketch, seeing only the small picture in the NBA. It is about total wins, seats, fun, living through our gladiators, and, making money. That’s why he is great.

  • minutemandan

    While this is really simplifying the argument, maybe think on this:

    There once was a dog who loved to fetch. His owner would take him to the park as often as possible, and throw the ball. While the dog was not found lacking in passion, the dog had difficulty with his vision. He just couldn’t see. The lack of vision resulted in the dog only fetching the ball half the time.

    While the owner loved the dog, he also loved to play fetch, and he grew weary of having to go retrieve the ball half the time. So the owner bought a new dog, who didn’t have trouble with eyesight, and also loved to fetch. This dog would fetch nearly every time, running out and bringing back the ball.

    Unfortunately, one day, the dog with good vision fell ill, and passed away. The dog with poor vision lived five years longer.

    As a result, the dog with good vision only fetched the ball 600 times. The dog with poor vision fetched the ball over 1,000 times. Which one was better at playing fetch?

  • Goodbye GK

    Great article!! I’ve been a Nuggets fan since the ABA days and will continue to be. However, I’ve attended my last Nuggets game until Karl is gone as coach. He has hung his hat on the job security of piling up regular season wins with the “carrot” of next year. He is a good coach who has made it painfully obvious he doesn’t have a clue on how to win a first round series let alone a championship.

  • http://espn herpderpnuggets

    I think that we need to get rid of the things that are making the nuggets bad, like Andre Miller. Once you get rid of a bromance so strong, GK is forced to actually give time to players that need it. There are some really good coaches this offseason that I would love see this nuggets team pick up, but I know it’s not gonna happen….so we can all hope Masai works his magic this offseason.

  • nugswin

    “To think any one of these coaches would have anything but success with the types of rosters Karl has had over the years is ill informed to the highest degree.”

    This is it, exactly. We could do better. And it wouldn’t be difficult to find somebody who could be the person to do better.

    Also, I don’t understand the ‘as long as we take away his crutch, Miller, everything will be okay’ attitude. If Karl is such a poor judge of what works then why does he get to stay on board? There are lots of better coaches out there who wouldn’t have played Miller constantly. Hire one of those AND trade Miller for one of the plastic washers for that old kitchen sink nobody uses anymore.

  • chronosynclasticinfundibula

    Excellent article. Thank you for taking time to write it!

  • DHinLV

    Louis-Ferdinand Celine wrote a book called “Death on the Installment Plan.” That title could very well work for the Nuggets’ – and certain fans’ – investment in Karl as our greatest hope.

  • matias

    “one side sees him as good, but replaceable; the other side as great, and irreplaceable.”

    That simplification doesn’t give fans enough credit- there are a variety of opinions between and outside of those two markers.

    I, for one, don’t want him fired but I don’t think he’s irreplaceable either. However I do think you’ll be hard pressed to find a better replacement right now.

    Just take a look at your list. Get Adelman if you can. Get Van Gundy if you can land a top 3 center and a bunch of stellar shooters- because so far that’s the kind of team he’s shown he can coach. Roll the dice and hope for a Vogel or Williams but be prepared to get a Corbin or Casey.

    On the other hand, we have a coach who just delivered a 57 win season, with a style of basketball that was highly entertaining and still enjoyable from a purist’s perspective. Yes there were issues but the positive overwhelmingly outweighed the negative. But the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence I guess.

    That doesn’t mean Karl didn’t make some astounding mistakes in the playoffs. But like always it’s a team effort, even in the current superstar driven NBA.

    I don’t have all of the answers but I’m not ready to get rid of Karl just yet. I’m not ready to see another Ty Corbin or Adrian Dantley take the helm. I’d rather not see a 47-win season AND get bounced in the first round. I’d rather not rebuild.

    This was a good year. With a few minor tweaks to the roster and assistant coaching staff, next year will be equally as good, maybe better. With an overhaul at the coaching level we can expect worse results for a while. So I’d rather not take the “grass is greener” approach just yet.

  • Dave

    Maybe George Karl is just more brilliant than we all know…he always butts heads with superstars on his team and since denver isn’t the most attractive place for super stars in free agency…and the best way to keep superstars off a team like denver is to be just good enough to make the playoffs and perpetually have the 20th pick in the draft…

  • JetLife82

    I guess I’m growing weary of Karl-led Nuggets teams too, but at the same time I can see that the roster we had this season was probably one or two pieces away from a deep postseason run. Masai even said as much before we went on that magical win streak. Having a deep roster with good transition players, Karl attempted to play to his team’s strengths. What you have to realise is that having no good low post player/bruiser or 3pt shooter wasn’t going to work too well come playoff time. Masai and Josh are aware of this, hence Karl will still have a job.

    Next season if all the pieces are there, the front office has realistic championship aspirations and Karl blows it again I think he will be shown the door. If he has a good 3pt shooter/stretch 4, a good big man and some luck with injuries there shouldn’t be any more excuses. Let him prove us wrong this season.

  • J

    GK is the Marty Schottenheimer of the NFL. Marty hung around, as will GK, but then he will eventually be shown the door. Have faith, Denver. Masai knows what he’s doing. 1 more year, then GK is gone, we will get a superstar, and the rest will be history.

  • dynamo.joe

    Come on, Kalen, we all know what makes Karl a “great” coach. He fought back from cancer twice and no one wants to be the asshat who roots for cancer.

    That’s pretty much the sum total or Karl’s accomplishments. That’s great for his family and I wish them the best, but it does nothing for me as a basketball fan.

  • Giovanni

    Great article Kalen!!!,

    Now in Italy i”‘m seeing Spurs Warriors…

    Great game but my desire was another match up…

  • Giorgos.G

    GK’s teams are a real pleasure to watch, but going in postseason, built on run-and-shoot logic, they usually fail.
    So, the question is, you want your team to offer a nice basketball show or you prefer playoff success??…

    sorry for my english

    • Forret

      This is a good point. If you’re going to live by the sword, get ready to die by it. You either have to accept the run-and-gun plan or not. It’s not really about the coach.

  • Giovanni

    Suicide warriors!!!!

    No!!!!

    God not exist!!!

  • Giovanni

    What a game!!!

    Basket is another level….

  • GIANLUCA

    Great article Kalen!!!,

  • Bryan

    So George Karl never gets more out of his team than the talent level suggests in the playoffs, so he shouldn’t be blamed for those losses. They were the underdogs.

    And when he is actually the favorite in a playoff series, the other teams was just amazingly better than anyone expected (I’m amused by last night’s game as proof, when the Spurs didn’t play Splitter, Tim Duncan was sick with the flu, and GS blew a 16 point lead by making the same mistakes they made against Nuggets, which the Nuggets didn’t capitalize on).

    So even when the Nuggets are the favorite and lose it’s not GK’s fault he just got more out of his team than anyone else could (Something he has never done in the playoffs) so we should just be thankful the Nuggets even made it to the playoffs.

    • LBJ

      You didn’t see the Spurs miss layups during their comeback (like Lawson and Chandler) in game 6. Manu buried a 3 for the W, while Ty missed a wideopen 3.

      The NBA is still (and always has been) a players league.

      • Mike K

        Greg Popovich game planned for Steph Curry and for Klay Thompson and everyone else that killed the Nuggets on every possession down the court.

        That’s on the coach. You don’t think George Karl should have done that? Sure it’s the players on the court playing, but it’s the coach on the sidelines planning and ensuring that the players are put in position to succeed. Karl lacks in this regard in the playoffs. Kalen’s stats back this up.

        • LBJ

          Considering that the Spurs were very lucky to be 1-1 at home – Pop must of done a pretty crappy job!

  • slugdugg

    Karl runs a great offensive scheme that works in the regular season when teams dont have time to gameplan for opponents. This scheme fails in the playoffs.

  • Trevor

    Well researched article.

  • http://Denverstiffs.com slader

    I find all this analysis fascinating. Thanks to Kalen and the others.
    Where I come down is here (and I bet I’m not alone):
    – talent-wise the Nuggets are not quite there. They need to subtract (Milller and Brewer) and add (say Korver and Milsap)
    – If Karl has a good big, he’ll play him (think Kemp). Lacking that he tends to go too small
    – Karl has his faults, in game decisions not least among them
    – Masai and Josh must insist that younger players get some burn. For example, Karl said months ago that Fournier was the best 3pt shooter in practice, but failed to prepare him for the playoffs – and yanked him after a couple of rookie mistakes Evan should have had the chance to make before Christmas.

    All done. Go Nuggets, with or without George Karl!

  • Giovanni

    Karl won coy….

    Congratulation Nuggets another ten years of George….

    • Mike K

      Based on recent history, this guarantees his termination in the not too distant future.

  • Owen

    Kalen, how dare you criticize the NBA COACH OF THE YEAR?!? This is blasphemy!

    Just kidding, good read and I will keep hoping Masai wakes up and fires his ass. If we keep him, just please;

    -Get Rid of Miller, grab a cheap young backup PG to go with Jham
    -Retain Iggy (for less than 12M/year only)
    -Force him to play Fournier and Start McGoo during the regular season to see if he can develop/start earning his keep and be in shape for starter minutes come playoffs

  • Fed up Nug

    Great article Kalen, you covered pretty much everything here. The only thing I can add is Karl was also responsible for the 2002 FIBA disgrace. When, despite hosting the event, the US placed 6th, the lowest its ever placed in over 50 years of competition. Karl had a notable feud going with Paul Pierce while the US was embarrassing itself. I’d also like to say that Karl’s regular season “greatness” is a bit overstated. Great coaches also win on the road, something we’ve seen very little of over the years.

    Anyways, congratulations to the Coach of the Year, hopefully you will be fired soon.

  • Chris

    Best response to the ESPN Insider article about GK:

    “This is ridiculous…so Paine is saying that if you overperform the Basketball Prospectus projection over the course of a 82 game sample size that means you are being lucky. Yet when you lose in a short 6-7 game series that exposes the true talent level of a team? How does that even make sense, disregarding the larger sample size as a greater function of luck than that of the small 6-7 game sample?

    Paine disregarded the issue of not playing his best players, but I think that is exactly what happened. Denver had the better roster especially considering the Warriors lost David Lee but instead of punishing them inside with his bigs in Faried and McGee he played right into the Warriors hands by going small. In game 5 Mcgee and Faried were smashing the Warriors for most of the game and them Karl inexplicably goes small with Wilson Chandler in the 4th quarter and that lead almost disappeared. The most important job of a coach is to play his best players because if you can’t get that right all the Xs and Os, motivational tactics, and schemes won’t really matter. That is why Karl has shown himself to be an overrated coach that is inferior to the likes of a Phil Jackson or Greg Poppovich.”

  • http://yahoo.com prospector

    Great post KALEN..

    Summay of this season:

    Millers is a Barkley wanna be no defense playing old playerm who KARL loves dearly… Must be because BOTH of them stink in the playoffs.. MILLER HAS NEVER WON A PLAYOFF SERIES… NEVER…

    BREWER is a gambler that gets burnt on defense to due said gambling.. That thinks he is a 3 point shooter despite his 23% playoff showing….

    KARL hates young players because they haven’t earned his “trust”… If you don’t kiss his boots you get banished to the bench regardless of your ability….

    Next year will be the same thing, with just a couple of names different… AND KARL will still be coach…..

    Death taxes and KARL choking in playoffs.. It’s a given.

  • Marko

    Hey guys, listen to a 40-year Warrior fan!

    With GK, Denver only got past Round 1 once in 9 tries. But, in the 18 years between Doug Moe exiting in Round 2 and the arrival of GK, Denver got past Round 1 only once (and was in Round 1 just five times).

    The Dubs got out of Round 1 only once in the past 18 years (We Believe!) – they only got to Round 1 once. (No, we won’t discuss the Clippers.)

    In 37 NBA seasons, with 17 different coaches, the Nuggets were in the playoffs 24 times. Not one coach brought them to play in the Finals.

    GK has only once been to the Finals. During his years of coaching, the Lakers won 7 championships, the Bulls won 5, San Antonio got 4 (oh, and Miami and the Rockets took two each). GK is not Phil or Pops – and neither of those guys were going to coach the Nuggets.

    I don’t recollect Denver ever having an NBA MVP, or ROY, or 6th-Man, or even an All-NBA First-teamer. I think Mutumbo got a DPOY, didn’t he?

    GK had Gary Payton. He had Carmelo, & Ray Allen (though he made Ray split time with Dell Curry in Milwaukee). Payton and McMillen each led the league in steals for GK.

    Denver is one of a dozen cities (not counting Vancouver or San Diego) which haven’t seen a Finals game since the NBA/ABA joined hands. I doubt it will in the future, until there’s a change way above GK’s pay-grade.

    It’s NBA basketball – nobody’s job is secure! But before you jettison the Coach of the Year, I recommend you take a look a what you’ll replace him with.

    • leeds

      We would gladly let you have the COY as your coach. Please take him…

      would you take him? If not, then you should say anything. and if you did take Karl as your coach,then you would be sitting home right now watching the playoffs in round 2 like we Nuggets fans always do

      • leeds

        ** If not, then you should not say anything. **

      • Mike K

        GS already had him and kicked him to the curb. I think they don’t want him back.

  • ryanhodo

    Great read, thanks for taking the time to write this. You’ve successfully dug out every thought I have that I’m incapable of putting into words since I’m not a gifted writer and I appreciate that.

  • Henry

    Kalen, this sober piece is really appreciated. Excellent work. I have known and loved our George Karl, but he has to be let go by the Nuggets. We have a young roster that needs to be developed in a different direction.

    Yes, now is the time to fire the man who just got Coach of the Year. It doesn’t matter. It’s the playoffs that count, anyway. FIRE GEORGE KARL.

    • Giorgos.G

      and if GS wins the spurs, then fire Popovich too!!!
      Nuggets fans you’re unbelievable!!!

      • http://yahoo.com prospector

        You apparently don’t mind running a 37 year old slacker point guard into the ground against Golden State… I would rather have finished as an eight seed and spent the season developing JHAM, EVAN, STONE, and McGEE…

      • Henry

        Sure, if Popovich can’t figure out how to beat what is effectively a fired-up college team on some bizarre Christian mission in a seven-game series, then he should be fired. He won’t be fired, of course, but he hasn’t done a very good job over the last few postseasons.

        If we Nuggets fans are “unbelievable!”, then so be it. We’re fired up over removing a head coach who can’t figure out how to win in the playoffs; who is too stubborn to realize which of his moves aren’t working; who won’t prepare his team for postseason success.

        NBA teams must have half-court scoring approaches. In an age of three-point shooting and scoring at the basket, NBA teams must have effective perimeter and pick-and-roll defense. The Nuggets need a coach who can and will institute these approaches to the game.

        That is not the stubborn George Karl. And now even Karl is saying he has to change. But it’s much too late for that crap to come out of his mouth. His arrogance kept him from changing way back when it could have made a difference.

        NOW IS THE TIME FOR THE DENVER NUGGETS TO MOVE THE FUCK ON. Dump Karl any way you can. No more Karl. I will no longer watch games on the idiot box or otherwise spend money if Karl is still the head coach by training camp. NO MORE KARL.

        • Giorgos.G

          then who?? Lionel Hollins maybe, as i’ve read above by some fans??
          I live in Greece and if i want to watch a nice basketball game, i must stay awake till very late!
          do you think i would lose 5 minutes of sleep to watch the Grizzlies’ wrestlers?? certainly not, but for the Nuggets i would…

        • Mike K

          He’s said he needs to change after EVERY season he’s lost in the first round. He says it, fans forget and then we start throwing things at our TVs when we see the crap that was the GS series happening year after year after year.

          Pops gets a little slack. He did hang 4 banners in the AT&T Center rafters. Sure it’s been 6 seasons since the last one, but it does buy time. Karl doesn’t have that luxury. He doesn’t deserve that respect from the fans like Pops has in San Antonio. They’re worlds apart. Karl keeps talking about defense and does JACK when it comes to it. Pops not only talks about it, but has implemented a pretty damn good one, one his players have bought into 100%.

  • Stephen H

    Trade miller for Bledsoe from clippers, don’t resign brewer or mozgov, resign stone and Quincy miller, sign korver or jj reddick, and of course resign iggy, and drop coach who only coaches regular season teams and not postseason teams. If iggy doesn’t resign then sign oj mayo.

  • TR

    THANK YOU!!!! I WAS BEGINNING TO THINK THERE WAS NO HOPE IN HUMANITY!!

    Why does EVERYBODY seem to like GK?? I’m so miffed; it really does blow my mind. This article is honestly the best one I’ve read all year. It’s almost like you got into my head, heard my cries, and felt my pain. What is so great about mediocrity? When has just going suddenly become good enough? I’m sorry but I’m not, or will I ever be, OK with settling for average. WHY SETTLE?? Your roster isn’t full with garbage. It’s pretty obvious this team has a boatload of solid, young talent. And it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere based on the FO. They obviously put in time and effort to assemble winning ballclubs. They obviously know how to handle a draft. But when your GM is one of the best in the league (or best IMO) and you still fail to COMPETE in the playoffs, to me it’s unacceptable. What’s the point of having a good team when there is a lack of actual coaching? And then again, why find talent in the draft when your coach has NO intention of playing them, regardless of if they’ve earned it or not. Why worry about building a similar roster when your coach is blindly in love with the ONE GUY who is a detriment to said roster? Why worry about coaching a philosophy of defense leads to easy offense when you play said guy starter minutes and he has no intention of playing said philosophy? It’s these painful reasons that have lead to my hatred of GK. Oh yeah, and then there’s that thing about his lack of actual COACHING. I mean honestly, what is he doing on that bench?? It’s obvious he’s not coaching. It’s one thing to lose when you give it everything, or if your outmatched, out-manned, whatever it may be; that happens in the world of sports. But when your squads win 50 games continually in the regular season, and then get to the postseason and look like the Charlotte Bobcats playing the 95-96 Bulls, there’s a HUGE problem. When you watch a game, and you KNOW you’re going to lose, why watch? What is the point as a fan to see something you care about be beaten down again, and again, and again… Why would somebody watch something they care about so much die a slow and painful death; and then witness that over, and over, and over..? It almost brings tears to my eyes; I’m not sure if it’s sadness or just puuuuuure anger.

    Whatever it is, I’m tired of it.

    Karl has to go.