By Harry Allison
Sixers owner Josh Harris and GM Elton Brand held a joint presser yesterday and declared that coach Brett Brown’s job was never in jeopardy, notwithstanding all the chat on the Twitterverse and on the radio to the contrary.
We even ran a story last weekend quoting the respected Marc Stein of the New York Times saying that NBA execs were telling him that the Sixers had to get to the conference finals for Brown to retain his job.
Well, the Sixers didn’t make it and Brown did!
So, naturally, local blowhard Howard Eskin asked Harris and Brand about Brown’s job, which he has kept through next season.
Eskin, asked about the conversations leading up to the decision to keep Brown for next season.
“I’ll start. A lot has made about this in the press and truthfully you can’t believe what you’re reading or what you’re hearing.
“Brett’s job was never in jeopardy. We were very focused on the playoffs and yeah we climbed to get into a lot of questions people were asking us, but I have a great relationship with Brett.”
What Eskin is referring to is Harris’ March quote at the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, when the Sixers’ owner was asked if anything less than a deep playoff run would be an issue for him.
Said Harris then:
“It would be problematic. Very problematic. It would not be what we’re playing for. We’d be unhappy. I’d be unhappy. The city would be unhappy. We’re going to work hard to make sure that doesn’t happen. We have enough talent on our roster that if we play the way we’re capable of playing, we can beat anyone.”
Harris didn’t specifically mention Brown’s job security at the conference. He then spoke before the Brooklyn playoff series, saying this about Brett:
“We have a lot of confidence in Brett. We’re focused on the Nets.”