The WNBA world was rocked to its very foundations yesterday when Dave Cowens resigned as the coach and general manager of the Chicago Sky. And I can promise you one thing: almost 50 percent of that last sentence was 100 percent sarcasm-free.It wasn't a good season for the Sky. The team went 5 - 29, which was easily the worst record in the WNBA. And as the losses piled up, Cowens bemoaned the team's lack of talent, player injuries, and life in general. Which is quite a turnaround from last May, when he promised to instill the team with the "scrappy fighting spirit" he had:
"The WNBA represents all that is great about basketball. My goal as a player in the NBA was not to be the best player on the floor, but to be the best team player. I see that concept everywhere I look in the WNBA. The players move the ball, play intense defense and dive for loose balls. They play with mutual respect, tenacity and high energy."Pretty glowing terms for a guy who, only four months later, was jumping into the last lifeboat on the Titanic. Cowens had also said "getting to build a team from scratch is a dream come true for any coach." That dream, of course, turned into a nightmare as it became clear that winning requires more than floor dives and respect. It also requires that you actually, you know, understand your players.
"Cowens said he enjoyed coaching the Sky but conceded he did not initially grasp the differences between coaching men and women. By way of example, he said he it took him a while to realize WNBA players craved order and planning, while he coached by the NBA model of leaving ample room for freelancing and improvisation."Reading between the lines, it's pretty obvious that Cowens expected his players to basically go out and coach themselves...just like NBA players. But instead of Stephon Marbury glaring at him for suggesting a pass, he had Coretta Brown looking to the sidelines for instructions that Cowens couldn't give her. Although you have to wonder whether that "freelancing and improvisation" theory really works for men, since Cowens has a lifetime NBA coaching record of 161 - 191.Anyway, now Cowens is going to be an assistant coach for the Detroit Pistons. I have no idea what they could possibly need him for. I mean, has he demonstrated some tangible skill or intangible quality that will actually make the Pistons a better team? Especially when quotes like this came out of the exit interview from his last job?
"I'm glad I got the chance to do this. It helped me be more disciplined with paying attention to details. If you really know what you want, and where you want to be at the end of the season, you then can start at the beginning and build to that. I didn't really know that."So...if you know beforehand where you want to be...you can actually start at the beginning and work toward getting there. Brilliant!! It's like, knowing what I want to write before I start a sentence will totally help me write the sentence. See?! I just did it!! Awesome.Dave says: "Work hard to succeed. Unless youcan't. Then quit and start over somewhere else."