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King of the Hill

In my post yesterday here at Sonicscentral, I talked about players not being as motivated by a nice coach, or a coach that’s generally a nice, easy going sort, versus an in-your-face, pain-in-the-neck type.

I questioned why this is so. I would like to follow up with a few thoughts to see if it’s an interesting topic for others here.

In order to be good in sports, you have to push yourself through a lot of pain, adversity, criticism and fend off hard challenges. Often, the best players have had some people tell them they couldn’t do it or that they’d never be successful. We’ve all heard the story about Michael Jordan being cut from his high school team and how that motivated him.

Those of us that have played quite a bit of basketball have spent the late nights in the dark and rain shooting the extra shots; we’ve played through painful injuries, and we can probably name all of our coaches that pushed us farther than we would have ever pushed ourselves.

The most successful coaches tend to be those that have pretty strict discipline and run a tight ship leaving little to chance. I’m pretty sure that Bob Weiss didn’t fit the description of a strict disciplinarian that ran a tight ship. That’s why all the players wanted him as coach.

Bob Hill? That’s probably the essence of who Bob Hill is not. I don’t see a guy trying to be everyone’s best friend and do what’s best for everyone. By self admission, he’s a serious student of the game who probably has his own ways of doing things, and if you, as a player, want to be onboard with that plan, you’d better get in line.

We’ll see if it works. It worked for Nate last year when he made the decision he was going that direction (and he’s continued it in Portland probably getting more wins out of that team already than anyone expected), and that style will be employed by Hill. He doesn’t have the luxury of an extended training camp, but his style may not need that anyways.

I’m not looking at a nice victory over a bad team as an example that the Sonics have made the right decision in hiring Hill, but I think moving past Weiss was a good idea, and maybe a good management blue print for all the Seattle sports teams to look at. Maybe there’s a good reason nice guys finish last.