I just can't say goodbye to Roy. I feel like there's so much more he can give to the game of basketball and the Blazers. I recognize that he can't (shouldn't) play the game again, but does he posses the teaching ability to impart his winning ways onto young players? Would he be willing to be a coach?
I've read articles about how Roy has been working out with future NBA players like Wroten and Terrence Jones, teaching them a few things and dispensing advice. If he has the desire, I'd like for the Blazers to explore a coaching position for him. He's an All-Star with street-cred. He's not long from the game, so he knows the players, coaches, and refs. He may not have the knees to play an entire season, but I'd bet he could school the youngsters during practice sessions. Since we're moving to rebuild again, what better source of experience could we get for the new players than the R.O.Y. that brought the Blazers back to respectability.
I realize that hanging out with players and handing out pointers is a far cry from being a developmental coach, but if Roy has the desire to become one, he could be great. There are two players in the draft that I'd love to see him teach the game: Jeremy Lamb or Austin Rivers. According to DraftExpress.com's most recent mock draft, both players would be available with our 11th pick.
During a rebuild, the best way to return to greatness is to develop your talent internally. Other than coaches Bayno and Canales, what coaches did we have that really elevated the play of the young players?
This is several steps down the "things-to-do" list for the organization, but sometimes I wonder if it's even on their list at all. This might help them:
- Hire GM.
- Hire Head Coach with solid offensive and defensive philosophy (see Greg Popovich).
- Hire lead assistant coach that compliments head coach.
- Hire assistant coaches (developmental coaches) for Post, Wing, Back court.
- Draft BPA only.
- Create the ultimate NBA Player Development Training Course to train the mind more than the body. Fill it with: 1. Classroom and video training (position and team concept specific). 2. On-court walk throughs in advancing speeds from slow to in-game. 3. Weight room activity to build strength and explosiveness. 4. Yoga/pilates to build body control, balance, and flexibility. 5. Meditation to calm the mind and body. 6. Visualization to mentally repeat each lesson hundreds of times perfectly in the mind before attempting them with the body. 7. Individual player training sessions to focus on specific areas of need (ie. cross-over, catch and shoot, defensive movements, etc) 8. Positional training to expand on walk through lessons. 9. Taped scrimmages, where players implement lessons in simulated game situations with developmental coaches making notes and having video reference ability. 10. Positional Post Scrimmage Review with developmental coaches meeting with each position to review their notes and video. This should happen after the players have cleaned up and prepared to leave. It should include what was supposed to happen, what actually happened, and how things should be done differently in the future. 11. Homework is downloaded onto an IPAD for them to spend about 30 minutes viewing video of plays, situation testing, or simply visualizing free throws.
- Develop an intense practice environment that is more intense than a real game.
These players are high priced investments that deserve the best we have to realize their ultimate potential, and getting developmental coaches that they'll respond to is a key piece in making that happen. Is Roy a good option? What options are out there to help develop Wings & Bigs?