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Avery Johnson can be a bit of a control freak with Brooklyn

Dec 5, 2012, 1:25 PM EDT

Brooklyn Nets v Miami Heat Getty Images

Avery Johnson won a lot of games as the coach of the Dallas Mavericks, but things were done his way, his style of play with defense and a slow-it-down, controlled offense. Dirk Nowitzki referred to it as a dictatorship.

Things have not changed much, just the venue.

The Brooklyn Nets are winning a lot of games but doing it Johnson’s way. He calls the plays, he sets the tone. Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News got Deron Williams — the kind of point guard a lot of coaches would give some freedom — to talk about it.

“At times, he likes to micro-manage the game.”

Not all players like that, go ask Devin Harris.

Williams admits he has some latitude — but like a parent dealing with a teenager, allowing some freedoms has to come with them maintaining other responsibilities.

As Williams says, “he’s not always going to agree, but he’s going to listen.” Johnson let the offense flow against the Thunder. Williams benefited on one end while the defense crumbled. For some reason the Nets were suckered into Oklahoma City’s preferred style of play, attempting to run up and down with a team more adept at such entertaining basketball.

After a rough first weeks of the season the Nets had been playing pretty good defense up until Tuesday night. And so you can expect Johnson to rein his team in a little. Try to get them to focus on defense.

But this is a back-and-forth, push-and-pull thing that could get interesting late in the season and into the playoffs, when the competitive Williams will want more.

  1. LPad - Dec 5, 2012 at 1:30 PM

    I wouldn’t say they were suckered. Lopez didn’t play and it’s hard to slow the game down without a low post presence.

    • franchiseplaya - Dec 5, 2012 at 4:17 PM

      Are you suggesting that humphries isn’t a low post presence?! i’m appalled.

  2. fanofevilempire - Dec 5, 2012 at 2:05 PM

    Dirk was a bitch, Avery made him a winner, because Avery is a winner.

    Knick fan!

    • badintent - Dec 5, 2012 at 11:45 PM

      yeah, he made Dirk play D for 3 quarters. IF Avery is a freak , what is his road groupies ? The Freaketts. !! Nice Knick win tonight. We don’t make excuses for injuries like a certain laker troll we know, we just win.

    • bluestar4ever - Dec 6, 2012 at 4:51 AM

      Considering that Dirk won his only championship after Avery was fired, that seems pretty illogical. Seems more like Rick Carlisle made him a winner

  3. bluestar4ever - Dec 6, 2012 at 4:57 AM

    Dirk was far from the only Mavs player who detested Avery’s micromanaging. In fact, there were several reports here in Dallas that there was an outright locker room mutiny brewing and several players were asking to be traded. What finally ended up getting him fired was the fact that the Mavericks gave up a TON of assets to trade for Jason Kidd, and Kidd chafed under Avery’s style and was poised to leave as a free agent unless they fired him and brought in someone willing to give him more freedom to run the offense. Great point guards like Kidd in his prime and Deron Williams now deserve freedom to run their offenses; not giving them that is frankly bad coaching. He is under-utilizing his best player because he is too much of a control freak to take his hands off the reins even a little bit. Eventually that wears down all of his players, regardless of position. His style of coaching works for a short time, then players get sick of him. Reminds me of Scott Skiles

  4. BJ - Dec 6, 2012 at 10:57 AM

    Avery Johnson’s a control freak.

    In other news, grass grows, birds fly, sun shines, and Mark Cuban’s a loudmouthed schnook.

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