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League source calls Brad Stevens “the anti-Calipari, the anti-Pitino”

Screen shot 2013-07-05 at 9.22.44 AM
Wait, what?

In case you’ve been out of the Twittersphere for the past few days, Brad Stevens got a new job. The 36-year-old boy wonder is the new head coach of the Boston Celtics, and pundits across the nation still can’t believe it. Over his six years at Butler, Stevens earned a reputation as a hard-working brilliant young coach who does things “the right way,” or rather, “the Butler way.” You know, smart kids playing team ball in the shrine that is Hinkle Fieldhouse. By taking two teams to the National Championship game in the past three years, he’s become every major school’s heir apparent. And now he’s making the move to the pros.

The media and fans seem split on the hire; half praise Celtics president Danny Ainge for “thinking outside of the box,” while the other half cynically predict Stevens’ demise with lists of which school he’ll go to next. The move was apparently in the works for a while, league sources tell The Botson Globe’s Baxter Holmes. In fact, one of those league sources says the move is a good risk because Stevens will put his players first, unlike…John Calipari and Rick Pitino??

“You always have those questions, ‘Does the transition from college to the pros work?’ and all that,” a league source said.

[But] he’s the anti-[John] Calipari, the anti-[Rick] Pitino. Those guys, they think it’s about them. He’s going to learn that it’s about the players and that’s going to help.

“Everything is a risk, but this is a good risk.”

I can see why this league source wanted to remain anonymous: his argument is total crap. Brad Stevens is a nice guy and a great coach, and I’m sure he will put his players first. I won’t speak for Rick, but since coming to Kentucky, Cal has preached the importance of his “players-first” philosophy to the point that someone actually made the man a jacket with the phrase printed on the front last week. Tell me, “league source,” how is Cal thinking about himself when he encourages his players to go pro if they’re projected to go high in the draft? Surely, Cal was thinking of himself when he gave Kyle Wiltjer a full release to transfer to any school he wants recently. That selfish SOB. What a guy.

Keep punching away in those shadows, league source. Even a blind squirrel finds a nut sometimes.

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

36 Comments for League source calls Brad Stevens “the anti-Calipari, the anti-Pitino”

  1. Dee
    10:35 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    Hater’s going to hate…smh

  2. H.A. Milton
    10:38 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    I give Brad Stevens 2 seasons in Beantown…either the fans or Rondo will eat him alive.
    That is, unless Rondo heads elsewhere, in which case Stevens is really screwed.

  3. Rei
    10:39 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    anti-Calipari and anti-Pitino means he can’t win a championship right?

  4. J-Pat
    10:41 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    I think Cal would admitted that he used to be more for himself, but somewhere along the way became about the players. Cal and Pitino when they first went into the league it was about them. Obviously, it’s no longer true for Cal, but the point is made is fair.

  5. Poster
    10:41 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    I think this was a mistake by Boston, although I’m not sure who else they may have hired. I also don’t know why he’s the supposed heir to every major school. His type of basketball just doesn’t seem like it will work in the NBA. They can’t foul and get away with it like in college or hold the ball for 35 seconds. It’s smart strategy for an undermanned college team, one that 75% of NCAA coaches have tried to duplicate the last couple of years, but it has made college basketball unwatchable.

  6. Kentucky Effect
    10:47 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    Cal’s players first model: Saying Archie is “uncoachable” (definitely hurting his draft stock), kicking Ryan Harrow when hes lying on the ground in pain, telling the media Poythress isn’t playing hard enough over and over, etc. It’s a Calipari first program, don’t fool yourselves

  7. whatev
    10:55 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    #6 = Troll

  8. Skeller03
    10:56 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    The ignorance of #6 is laughable. Cal never said Archie is uncoachable. He was frustrated after a game and said that “some” were uncoachable and never directly said Archie. He has done nothing since the season ended but help Archie by talking with every GM that’ll listen. He nudged a Ryan Harrow that was rolling around on the ground from a weak foul. There was no kicking involved. Just because it involved his foot does not mean it was a kick. Poythress wasn’t playing hard enough and Poythress himself admitted it at the end of the season. Does Calipari calling him out for lack of effort make him not players first? If anything, he’s trying to bring the best out of everyone of his players. Telling them to player harder. Challenging them. Is 14 millionaires in the past 4 years Calipari-first? He could have easily insisted they stay. But no, he said go – knowing that he would have to deal with the lack of continuity and a fresh start of players the next year. He’s helped these young men reach their dreams years before most coaches would. Is that Calipari first? #6, you sir are nothing but a hater if you do not see that.

  9. Intel
    11:03 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    Homers are going to homer! Let’s not listen to a person in the know and part of the league itself.

  10. Reality
    11:14 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    I like how cow steal the spotlight during the draft by mugging for the camera and knocking over people to make sure he is seen.

  11. Skeller03
    11:15 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    Just because it is a “league source” doesn’t mean that they have any more knowledge than you or I. More likely than not, this person has never worked with Calipari and is basing it off what they saw or heard about just like you or I. Only difference is, they’re basing it off of his time in the NBA and we base it off what we’re seeing at UK.

  12. Big Blue Coming At You
    11:16 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    Stevens is a good coach but reaching 2 NCAA title games and actually winning 2 NCAA title games are totally different. Not to mention he has absolutely no experience with managing the egos of top talent. Then there’s the fact he’ll be coaching a legendary franchise in a rabid sports town like Boston. Good luck to him.

    11:22 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    Stevens will be fired within 4 years, book it. Good news for him though is that UCLA job will be open.

  14. kadizkat
    11:28 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    Alas, still nothing for UL fans to do but to come to KSR. #lil’brothereffect

  15. Rod
    11:29 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    I think everyone so far (#1-#10) misinterpreted the league source’s comment “He’s going to learn that it’s about the players . . .”. My interpretation is: For most NBA franchises, coaches are expendable. Players are not. Except for a few coaches, like Auerbach, Jackson, etc. who were also GMs, if there’s a conflict between the coach and a star player, the player is retained and the coach is fired. That’s one of the many, many reasons I find the NBA, and professional sports in general, so unappealing.

  16. UK
    11:33 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    Im rooting for Stevens to do well. Mainly because I want Shaka Smart when Cal does decide to retire which is hopefully never.

  17. Mark
    11:49 am July 5, 2013 Permalink

    #6 and #10… Don’t agree with either of you. Just because he coaches does not mean he is not trying to bring out the best in the players. It is player 1st. Anyone that coaches on the Pro level better learn that.

  18. Reality
    12:06 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    6 & 10 are jealous assholes. 14 got it right #lil’brothereffect.

  19. Did you Make That Up?
    12:16 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    #10-Did you make that up? The term “cow” for Cal? Now, don’t be shy. That is as funny now as when you first started using it.

  20. Reality
    12:17 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    I like to be in the spotlight too. I haven’t accomplished much in my life, but I do like to be known for negative posts on other team’s websites.

  21. facts
    12:31 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    UK fan….love Cal. But, what the league source meant is that Cal and Pitino are accustomed to the spotlight and in the NBA, the coach is a background player and the players matter more. Player’s first aside…..Cal obviously loves the spotlight. Would make it hard to be a successful NBA coach when you’re the star (which Call obviously is in Lexington).

  22. Ha
    12:36 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    I think the article is trying to say brad Stevens will let the players walk all over him and do what they want. Where as calipari and pitino are more get up in your face and motivate you. MBA players don’t like to be yelled at by people who make less money.

  23. Ha
    12:38 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink


  24. Jimmy Schmitz
    12:56 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    #6 made a fair point, and it wasn’t JUST Archie whom Cal implied was uncoachable. He said “we have several who are essentially uncoachable.” As far as Cal getting on the phone with GMs to talk about Archie, he repeatedly told the media that he told Archie himself he was not ready for the NBA, and that Archie is “going to have to make it work himself.” Not sure that was in Archie’s best interests. Plus, in fairness, BOTH Cal and Pitino immediately blame the losses on their players after every disappointing game. I was horrified during this past season at the number of times Cal bashed the players after losses. I’m happy he is here, but let’s face it — this was not a good coaching job he turned in this year. Six All Americans should equal more than a first round NIT loss, I don’t care how young your players are, and when YOU can’t make that work, that’s on YOU, not the boys.

  25. eddie vedder
    12:59 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    Love Cal, but if you don’t think he has a massive ego then you’re crazy. Last year while addressing fans waiting outside Memorial for tickets he said “I can’t believe you’re all here to watch me coach” or something to that effect.

  26. Bart Edwards
    1:02 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    Main problem for Rick and Cal in NBA was they found out you can’t be the center of attention, and you can’t threaten or bully or intimidate NBA millionaires who are grown men by threatening playing time or insulting them in practice. It won’t work. Their money is guaranteed, and you can’t take away their scholarships.

    Both Rick and Cal failed to put the NBA players first, and it showed. Not sure what the Thompson girl’s point was, because she used examples of how Cal behaves NOW as a college coach at UK, instead of talking about how selfish and incompetent he was as an NBA coach — which was the league source’s obvious point. Read Cal’s book and you will see he agrees.

  27. DCS195
    1:47 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    24) You are absolutely right. This past season was all on Cal. One year after coaching a National Championship team, Cal totally made a bush-league coaching effort. It wasn’t that he had players that wouldn’t accept or apply what the coaches kept telling them was necessary for the team’s success, their individual development or the realization of their future dreams. It was all Cal. Your insight is undeniable. I’m surprised your analytical talent hasn’t been spotted by Pat Forde, Jerry Tipton, or some other great basketball mind.

  28. DCS195
    1:59 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    24) Cal pulled every string possible this past season trying to motivate, educate and develop these players into a solid team. Nothing, and I mean nothing worked. It wasn’t that the players intentionally sabotaged the team’s success, but they definitely would not, or could not change their long held ways of doing things and bad habits they had developed. It wasn’t that all the players did not put out enough effort, because they did. It was they were unable to do the things necessary for their and the team’s success. I fully believe that Cal may have worked harder at coaching this past year’s team than he ever has, it just didn’t work. That’s not his fault. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. So far it has worked much more often than not.

  29. Roy Combs
    2:06 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    Greatest jacket ever!

  30. m whelan
    2:11 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    Brad Stevens was hired by the celtics due to his statistal approach to the game, much like the heats eric spoelstra is. And NBA grown men are much easier to coach than immature college kids.

  31. Earache
    2:16 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    Just another asshole trying to take a shot at Calipari. Haters gonna hate.

  32. mlvei
    2:17 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    I disagree with the “Cal did a bad coaching job” theory, in this respect. Look at the talent he had last year. Nerlens, great defensively, poor offensively. Archie never learned discretion regarding when to take it to the basket. Harrow had fairly obvious limitations in accepting the point guard role Cal wanted him to take, in spite of having been for a redshirt year of practice and observation. Cauley-Stein was recruited as a project with limited offensive skills. Wiltjer had not improved since the previous season and his weaknesses were highlighted by teammates shortcomings when on the floor. Finally, Poythress skills at the time were more tuned to small forward but he was often required to play inside. And, virtually no bench. Cal’s fault? Well, he does recruit them but his method will not give 2012 results every year, depending on who remains and what is available. This program is doing a high wire act now, with very little margin for error leading to results regarded as failure around here. Cal coached his butt off this year to the point I thought he would have a heart attack and it didn’t work. I know nothing about his NBA career and really only care what he does here; but to claim he is totally self centered is at conflict with evidence I have seen.

  33. I Miss Karen Sypher
    2:30 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    Leaving Butler will be the best thing he ever did because he might fail at being the coach for the Celtics.

  34. Kevin C.
    2:46 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    This is actually kinda true. He’s 0-2 in Nat.Champ. games, has never had a top-5 Recruiting class (not even close, LOL), and unlike Cal, Brad signed a huge 12-year extension in 2010, and failed to come close to honoring that contract.

  35. On the fence
    4:09 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    Ok, Cal has done an amazing job in today’s NCAA climate, but t
    Lady years team was BCG bad, so enough with the “Cal is God” defense. In his recruiting structure, the players first mantra is his sales pitch. Does he live by it. Absolutely… Has to as all eyese are on him in the recruiting world. But let’s not kid ourselves about hyper-competitive coaches like Cal and Pitino….it is ALWAYS about them.

  36. On the fence
    4:09 pm July 5, 2013 Permalink

    Last years…not lady. Sorry