New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick has fond admiration for Boston Celtics coach Brad Stevens, especially after the job he did this season.
There is a pretty nice bond forming between New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and Boston Celtics head coach Brad Stevens. As one is winding down his career as one of the most successful coaches in the NFL, the other is a rising young coach in the NBA.
Both, have found the formula to winning through different paths.
In Belichick, you have a strict coach who demands focus and discipline out of his players. In Stevens, you have an easy-going coach who gives his players a little more freedom on and off the court. Where they are similar is their emphasis on versatility out of their players and each find ways to put players in positions to be successful.
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Following a season in which he led his team to Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals without the services of Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward, the praise Stevens is getting from his players and colleagues are well supported.
Simply, he has established a winning culture in Boston Bill Belichick is familiar with. Most importantly, a culture the New England Patriots future Hall-of-Fame coach respects and admires.
"“Coach Stevens is incredible,” Belichick told Greg Bedard of the Boston Sports Journal. “He always points out that the players are the ones who, regardless of the situation, have made this a special team, defying all expectations and adversity game after game. But he clearly is a driving force behind it. Coach Stevens is a phenomenal persona, leader, teacher and strategist, and the job he does is a model for all coaches.”"
Like Belichick, Stevens has and will take a little criticism when the team falls shorts. While his decision not to feature Jason Tatum in the offense down the stretch in Game 7 will not be as scrutinized as Belichick’s decision not to play Malcolm Butler in Super Bowl LII, there will still be second guesses.
However, those types of coaching decisions is part of the success. As Brad Stevens has said himself, “pain is part of the path.”
Bill Belichick certainly knows and understands what that is about.
The Patriot Way under attack
Speaking of winning ways, apparently it has become open season on bashing Bill Belichick and how he conducts things in New England.
While current players like Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski reportedly have issues with the head coach, a former player in San Francisco 49ers defensive end Cassius Marsh has sounded off on the “Patriot Way” and how players don’t have fun in New England.
It is what Philadelphia Eagles offensive lineman Lane Johnson has been preaching ever since the Super Bowl victory parade down the streets of Philly.
While Johnson’s criticisms come from afar and most likely from former players who share the same locker room (LeGarrette Blount and Chris Long), Marsh’s disdain comes from his lack of success in a New England Patriots’ uniform.
He told the San Francisco Chronicle that he didn’t “enjoy his time there” and hated it so much that he thought about not playing football. But, those words contradicted his feelings about the team when he was in the organization. He praised the team’s work ethic and the winning culture.
So, it’s hard to take Cassius Marsh seriously. The contradiction of his experience is nothing else than a player who didn’t fit in with what the New England Patriots look for in players. He has a new team he says he enjoys in the Niners.
Just move on.