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No Point In Judging Dunlap

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You have no earthly idea who Mike Dunlap is. And neither do I. However, most of the emails and tweets I received about the new Charlotte Bobcats coach on Monday night would make you think they know Dunlap like a family member, and one they don’t like to claim.

But I’m almost certain the critics don’t know next to anything about him. Okay, they might know he’s an assitant with St. John’s and acted as head coach while Steve Lavin recovered from cancer treatments. Maybe they know he used to work for Denver Nuggets head coach, George Karl, and that he prefers a very fast paced style. Most importantly, the detractors probably noticed that Dunlap was not a finalist for this job, and that he was one of 10 coaches interviewed.

But has anyone outside of a St. John’s season ticket holder watched him coach a team, run a program, interact with his players? The answer is almost certainly no, which is why it is pointless to pass judgment on Dunlap.

Instead, any skepticism or anger should be directed towards Michael Jordan. He’s the owner of the team, and has made a parade of errors since taking control. Until Jordan, and his general manager, Rich Cho, arm Dunlap with a roster of talented NBA players it doesn’t matter what we know or don’t know about the new head coach.

Now, if Jordan and Cho are able to find talent then we can start evaluating Dunlap. It is natural for the fans to want a big name hire, but that seems to mean little in the NBA. Erik Spoelstra and Scott Brooks are both coaching in the NBA Finals, and chances are their respective cities knew very little about them when they were hired.

Maybe Dunlap will be the next big name in NBA coaching, or maybe he will be a full fledged disaster. Again, we simply don’t know. Let’s hope Michael Jordan does.


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