NBA

TNT’s Stan Van Gundy Throws Cold Water on Chris Broussard’s Hot Take

Stan Van Gundy only got around to joining Twitter last month and is pretty fiery. We already knew that because he’s been fired by three NBA teams, even if the Miami Heat didn’t term that departure a firing. Now, he’s in a tussle with Chris Broussard because the Fox Sports NBA analyst would like to see another coach fired.

Chris Broussard thinks Terry Stotts should be fired

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Terry Stotts lasted less than two full seasons apiece as the head coach of the Atlanta Hawks and Milwaukee Bucks, but his third stint in charge is going better. Stotts is 325-249 in seven seasons with the Portland Trail Blazers, taking the team to the playoffs each year.

Stotts, a George Karl protégé going back to his days as a player in the Continental Basketball Association, guided Portland to the 2019 NBA Western Conference finals but hasn’t brought the Trail Blazers to the NBA finals yet.

Fox Sports analyst Chris Broussard floated the idea earlier this week that the Trail Blazers aren’t going to win a championship with Stotts at the helm because of the way the offense is built around a pair of smallish guards, 6-foot-2 Damian Lillard and 6-3 CJ McCollum, who do their best work on the perimeter.

Lillard shoots 40.1% on 3-pointers and McCollum 37.9%. They account for half of Portland’s attempts from beyond the arc.

“Terry Stotts has done a very good job in Portland — that’s undeniable,” Broussard said. “But I do think they have run their course with him. You’re only going so far with two small, ball-dominant, jump-shooting guards who do most of your scoring. … They need to find a coach who can get some sort of motion offense because they really got talent.” 

If Broussard wants to make a case for firing Stotts, is his handling of the offense where he should be taking a stand? By any measure, Portland’s offense is among the most productive and efficient in the league. The Trail Blazers were third in the league in points per 100 possessions during the regular season, not bad for a team plagued by injuries.

Stan Van Gundy shuts down Chris Broussard

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Stan Van Gundy, who has for now joined his brother Jeff in making the transition from coaching to broadcasting, blew a gasket after hearing Chris Broussard suggest that the Portland Trail Blazers needed to fire Terry Stotts.

After a strong regular season on offense, Portland’s offense has been even better in the NBA bubble following the pandemic re-start. If the 35-39 record constituted underperforming, then it’s hard to focus blame on that end of the court.

Blasting back on social media, where he has picked up 100,000 Twitter followers since joining last month, Van Gundy suggested a better candidate to be fired.

“It’s time for Fox Sports Radio to dump Chris Broussard,” he tweeted. “This is just stupid. He doesn’t like the Blazers’ offense. It was the 3rd best offense in the NBA. Get a clue.”

Stan Van Gundy shuts down Fox’s NBA analyst

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The blessing of social media is that it gives everyone a voice. Its curse is also that it gives everyone a voice, so keyboard warriors with little or no expertise on a particular subject routinely call for this guy or that guy to be fired.

It’s a little different in the shouting match between Chris Broussard and Stan Van Gundy because they both have solid basketball credentials. Where it becomes touchy is that both are calling for someone to be fired. To that end, Broussard returned fire on Van Gundy, though there’s some questionable logic involved.

“Unless u would’ve called for a fellow coach’s job while coaching, u need to keep from calling for the jobs of fellow media now that you’re media,” Broussard wrote on Twitter. “I’m doing my job as an analyst. I’m paid to give my opinion. Saying I should be fired cause u disagree is just stupid. Get a clue.”

Broussard may have a point to a certain extent, but Van Gundy is also paid to express opinions. If only people in another line of work can suggest that someone be fired, that makes for pretty nice job security for Broussard. After all, members of the media lead all others in sports when it comes to calling for people to be sacked.