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News » Brooks perfectly capable of playoff run

Brooks perfectly capable of playoff run

Brooks perfectly capable of playoff run With this being Scott Brooks' first full season as an NBA head coach, no time like the present to welcome him to the fraternity with a simple question asked of all coaches.

When will you make the playoffs?

If the Thunder makes the 2010 playoffs, there will be two absolute certainties:

1. Brooks will be an overwhelming choice as NBA coach of the year.

2. Thunder general manager Sam Presti will be an equally overwhelming choice as NBA executive of the year.

The Thunder shouldn't be expected to make the playoffs this season. Doubling last year's 23-game win total likely won't be good enough to finish in the top eight of the Western Conference.

A 50-percent increase in victories from last season would warrant heavy consideration for Brooks and Presti in the aforementioned awards.

Whenever the Thunder does make the postseason, there's no reason to think Brooks couldn't handle the job.

He made the playoffs six times as a player and three straight seasons as an assistant with the Denver Nuggets.

Brooks won a world championship as a backup point guard for the Houston Rockets in 1994 and would have won two straight had he not been dealt to Dallas the night before the trading deadline in 1995.

Good coaches steal what they learned from other good coaches. The most believable coaches freely admit they stole, which Brooks does.

Brooks has stolen from the likes of Houston's Rudy Tomjanovich.

"To me, he should go down as one of the best coaches of all-time," Brooks has said of Tomjanovich.

Brooks also played for Dick Motta, Mike Fratello, Jeff Van Gundy, Jim Lynam and served as an assistant under George Karl and P.J. Carlesimo.

Throughout his 11 seasons as an NBA player, an observant Brooks absorbed what he could from teammates, including hall of famer Hakeem Olajuwon.

"He was an incredible star, as humble and as hungry as a star can be," Brooks said.

Truthfully, there's no way for me to know how Brooks behaves behind the scenes with his team. The Thunder's practice facility is magnetically sealed, and I'm convinced Presti has some sort of deep-rooted CIA background.

But from the face time we outsiders are granted, Brooks comes off as someone players respect, someone knowledgeable and approachable, someone consistent in his teachings and expectations.

It's hard to imagine Brooks changing his ways when the role of playoff head coach is added to his resume.

As a 5-foot-11, 165-pound underdog his entire playing career, the perpetually persistent Brooks got the most out of himself as a player.

Look for him to do the same as a coach

John Rohde: 475-3099. John Rohde can be heard Monday-Friday from 6-7 p.m. on The Sports Animal Network, including AM-640 and FM-98.1.

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Author: Fox Sports
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Added: October 27, 2009


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