Go Billy! You da man! It's not so much I haven't liked or respected Donovan, who is a good choice, as he's always been accommodating and cooperative. He's a respected pro coach. And I have mentioned in the past the need for an experienced coach after so many NBA recent first timers like Boylen, Hoiberg, Thibodeau, Cartwright, Floyd and, yes, even Phil. Billy's a credible pros pro coach, which is what the team needed. I guess I was just being a little selfish and hoping he (or someone) was more like Donovan's mentor, Rick Pitino, the garish, legendary quote machine—"Larry Bird is not walking through that door, fans. Kevin McHale is not walking through that door, and Robert Parish is not walking through that door. And if you expect them to walk through that door, they're going to be gray and old."
You'll like Donovan, but don't expect to be entertained by his press conferences. Yes, I know, if you can be by his players that's enough. As a writer, I pine for the good quote guy, which Donovan is not. But I will acknowledge that's no longer the NBA coach, or for any sport, really. Mike Ditka the motivator now is the old man screaming to get off his lawn and famously ignored by players. Players are always players, competitive, concerned about health and finances. This also is the generation we've been making fun of. You know, the kids getting the participation trophies. They don't like to be yelled at (OK, other than Jimmy Butler). And if you want them to do something they'll do it, but they'll also need a good explanation. You might notice most of the most successful NBA coaches these days are the genial types who are very supportive, like Brad Stevens, Steve Kerr, Mike Budenholzer, Frank Vogel. I heard Pitino talking about Donovan and saying he and Vogel are the nicest people he's ever known. Coaches, the nicest people?