I really want to hear from Bruins who had the good fortune to watch Coach John Wooden’s team regarding a thought that has been going through my head for last few weeks. The question is even more relevant now that IMHO Coach Phil Jackson has established himself as the greatest basketball coach of the NBA.
Perhaps it is just me (and if it’s just me, please tell me so) but when I watch Coach Phill Jackson operate in nerve wrecking moments of a Laker game, I keep thinking: aaha, so that’s how what it must have been like to watch Coach Wooden on the sidelines. You can never sense an ounce of panic or worry from him (well I get that feeling watching Howland too). Especially when the opposing team goes on huge runs, Jackson doesn’t usually call panicky timeouts (again I sense that from Howland as well). What I see in Jackson is a head coach, who has supreme confidence in his players. It seems like he knows how well prepared his team is to the point that they are ready to read and react to all situations. Of course it helps to have some one like Kobe on the floor but you get the picture.
My question to all of you who had the pleasure to watch those magical Wooden teams and have been watching the Lakers is that whether you guys can see any similarities in that aspect between Coach and Phil Jackson? If the scope of the question is too narrow would like to hear your takes in general in terms of the comparisons between the two coaches on how they handled themselves in game situations (edited per Kurt's feedback - N).
Obviously I will never consider anyone close to being John Wooden. IMHO there is really no debate given Coach’s record in championship games. I don’t think any other coach will ever match to the kind of domination Coach Wooden was able to sustain during his run of 10 championship, and who knows just how many more banners he would have hung at Pauley if he had stuck around for few more years. However, Jackson is probably as close as any other basketball coach will ever get to Coach Wooden. So, I do feel comfortable posing the question above.
As always I call friends such as Class of 66, Fox 71 and other BNers who were able to watch Coach Wooden’s team as "Geezers" with respect and reference.
Again, would love to hear your thoughts on this. Am I completely off?