Posted: August 14, 2013
Wednesday, the Sixers announced that longtime Spurs assistant Brett Brown would become the team’s 24th head coach. After addressing the media in an afternoon press conference at the Wells Fargo Center, Brown took a moment to sit down with Sixers.com:
Max Rappaport, Sixers.com: We’re here with newly hired Sixers head coach Brett Brown. First off, Sam [Hinkie] has a lot of really great things to say about you, and it’s clear to see why he was interested in giving you the job. What was it about this situation, with the Sixers, that made you decide to leave San Antonio?
Brett Brown: Just the belief that we have a chance to turn it around. When you looked at the ownership group, you looked at the talents of Sam Hinkie, when you looked at the possibilities of future draft picks, when you looked at the development of a practice facility right around the corner, all those types of things influenced feeling like you were making a responsible move, bringing your family to Philadelphia, and I’m thrilled to be here.
MR: You mentioned the draft picks, and you mentioned the young talent… It’s a little bit of a different situation than it was for you in San Antonio. What are some of the challenges of taking over a younger roster than the one you worked with in San Antonio?
BB: I think just making sure the day-to-day stuff isn’t taken for granted, that you can keep a locker room together when you’re losing. That you don’t take your eyes off the process. It’s all about staying true to the process, with our rules, and defense, and what we’re trying to accomplish on offense. Just banging out good days. The accumulation of banging out good days is often times going to produce results. Initially, it’s just making sure that we don’t skip any steps.
MR: I think a lot will be made of your experience in San Antonio, just because of the success that that team had while you were there. What are some of the things that Gregg Popovich and the Spurs as an organization have done so well that’s allowed them to have such continued success?
BB: We [were] lucky with health, we [were] lucky that we built an organization that could sustain the evolution of different periods. Timmy [Duncan] was a post player, then we handed the torch to [Manu] Ginobili, then it was Tony [Parker] in the pick-and-roll game. [Spurs General Manager R.C. Buford] was great at bringing people around those guys that, as we passed the torch from one to the other, could survive – like finding Danny Greens and Gary Neals. It’s a very well-run organization. My experience working there will never be forgotten. It was a tremendous influence on why I’m here.
MR: This is your first head coaching job in the NBA, but you have some experience doing that in the Australian NBL, and more recently with the Australian National Team, heading up their program. What do you think that gives you, in terms of knowing how to be the head guy with an organization?
BB: I hope it puts me in a little bit better shape, on just understanding how the rules change when you sit one seat further over. Whether you’re having to deal with timeouts, or substitutions, or referees, or media, or running a practice, you know I’ve done that for a long time, and I love it. I’m 52 years old and spent 18 years doing what we’re talking about now, so I hope that counts for something.