It Doesn't Matter Who Coaches the Sixers, But It Does

Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

Because everybody likes a conflicting answer.

Initially, I lined up about 8 boating metaphors to explain the following point: A coach can't do much for his team if the talent is lacking. You can fill in your own boating metaphors from there, but that's the truth. And since the Sixers are very, very far away from having the necessary talent, the coach doesn't really matter, because providing he's not Eddie Jordan or Keanu Reeves in Hardball, he won't make a sizable difference either way.

Except not.

The endgame is important to consider. Do you want the Sixers to win a championship or do you want them to make the playoffs at all costs? If you want the Sixers to be a better team than last year, Josh Smith helps. If you want them to contend for a championship in a few years, the contract you'd have to give him does not help. I do not particularly care about the Sixers being better than last year, because I'd like them to win a high draft pick in 2014.

"WELL, YOU KNOW, FIREFIGHTERS RUN INTO A FIRE." -Eddie Jordan, apropos of nothing. (optional)

BUT! I'm also a person who watches a lot of Sixers basketball. I have eyes and those eyes have feelings. Consuming years and years of ugly basketball by large, sometimes athletic men in red, white, blue, and sometimes black and gold jerseys has turned my eyes into nihilists. (Cowards.)

I would very much like to watch fun basketball. That has appeal. That seems like it'd be a good time. If a coach -- any coach -- can take this band of ragtags -- any ragtags -- to a .300 winning percentage and a Berserker offense with more moving parts than Gary Sheffield's stance, I'd be thrilled. And regardless of what happens, they'll likely be canned before anything good happens anyhow. Not like we'll be stuck with the fellow.

I could maybe see a rational thought in saying "Well, what about Jrue? Or any other young, possibly able-bodied players on the roster? What if [NEW COACH] teaches them bad habits and screws with their career and we can never have them back?"

To which I respond: they're not going to hire Lindsay Lohan to coach the Sixers. This isn't the Census. We're talking about drawing from a pool of reasonably qualified individuals who can theoretically coach. Jrue isn't going to get shanked by any of these guys. Even if they throw basketballs at him, he's not a peach. Homie don't bruise easy.

Sure, there are some coaches that would help Jrue (and Thad and Arnett and Plumlee and... Evan?) more than others, but we have no way of knowing who those coaches are. We can identify the tangible strengths and weaknesses of players on the court, but coaches, for the most part, are translucent reflections of their team's talent playing one way or the other. I don't know if Brian Shaw do more for Jrue's career than Mike Budenholzer and neither do you.

Rich Hofmann: Hire Mike Budenholzer?

So since it doesn't matter, give me the offense, please. Haven't we suffered enough?

The biggest asterisk to this whole thing -- whole blog, really -- is Andrew Bynum. I'd watch them run a Hornets-paced offense if it meant a healthy Bynum. Aesthetics matter when you suck. Bynum's preternatural aesthetic would be just enough for me.

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