Late on Tuesday night during a post-game press conference, Larry Brown had the duty of providing the media with the somber news that Raja Bell’s wrist injury was much more serious than was previously known. Surprisingly, Bell’s injury will likely require surgery and a lengthy period of rehab. After reading the report, the immediate question in my mind was “How long will Raja be off the court?”.
LARRY BROWN’S NEXT MOVE
Days later, I have to wonder “How long will Coach Larry Brown be on the sidelines?” How much longer can Brown go through this uphill battle? He was brought in to install a “system” and coach the youngsters on the roster when he arrived. Since then, he’s replaced nearly all of the team with better players, but Charlotte still lacks any All-Stars. This season, he’s found his squad amongst the toughest division in the Association. With the season opener just days away, Charlotte has a huge challenge ahead against all of the improved teams in the Eastern Conference. So, just as the Bobcats appeared to have their new starting line-up healthy and ready, the news of Bell’s injury must have caused the coach to wonder “How long can I keep doing this?” Can the Larry Brown, at 69 years of age, really push against all of that he’s up against and turn the is team around?
Those familiar with the Bobcats understand the organization’s close relationship with losing. The business failures, Draft mistakes, and “Expansion” status have plagued the team with a list of obstacles that few organizations could overcome. Still, there’s a solid core of fans that keep coming back for more. Whether it’s just an unhealthy obsession with basketball or genuine interest in the team, the Bobcats have a few folks on their side. Can Larry Brown’s knowledge of the game and skills as a head coach turn this team into something more successful than it’s ever been? Can the cult of Cats fans become a movement?
There’s a lot of talk about Michael Jordan’s gambling habits. Considering the Bobcats situation, it looks like MJ has gone “all in” and stacked everything on his faith in Larry Brown. If Brown truly does turn this squad into a winning franchise, it would go down as one of Jordan’s great moves off the court. Achieving such an amazing feat of legitimizing the Bobcats would easily earn Coach Brown the NBA Coach of The Year Award this Spring. Wouldn’t that be a fine way to leave the game?