Neither Gregg Popovich nor Marshawn Lynch wants anything to do with the media. Or so it seems.
There were rumblings on Twitter before Super Bowl XLIX that Popovich’s sometimes cranky demeanor with reporters should be viewed similarly to Lynch’s well-documented media snubs. However, Popovich, who has coached the NBA’s San Antonio Spurs since 1996, pointed out in an interview with USA TODAY’s Sam Amick that he’s actually quite different than Lynch when it comes to media relations.
“The only time I’m uncooperative is the end of the first or third quarter,” Popovich told Amick. “Other than that, I do interviews and laugh it up with everybody all the time. I just have a philosophical difference with the NBA, and I let them know it every time. But that’s like 1 percent of the interviews that I do.”
In other words, Popovich simply isn’t a fan of conducting in-game interviews. He suggested there’s enough television access to both teams over the course of a game — with mic’d-up coaches, cameras in timeouts, etc. — that networks don’t have a reason to further take away from coaches doing their jobs.
“I said, ‘I’m supposed to be setting the defense and offense to start the next quarter, and I can’t do my job because I’m doing this inane deal with whoever is asking me a question,’ ” Popovich told Amick. “The questions are unanswerable. It’s like, ‘That quarter, you got killed on the boards. What are you going to do about it?’ ‘Well, I’m going to conduct a trade during timeouts.’ Or, ‘I’m going to ask them nicely to do a better job on the boards.’
“The questions just demand a trite quip, or something, so I just say, ‘You know, it just puts everybody in a stupid position.’ And (NBA officials) listen to it, and then they go, ‘Yeah, well (blabbering).’ And then they don’t do anything about it. So I just do what I do.”
Popovich plans to keep fighting to have in-game interviews removed from NBA broadcasts, but his effort is a far different beast than Beast Mode’s refusal to provide any reasonable responses whatsoever to media inquiries.
Thumbnail photo via Soobum Im/USA TODAY Sports Images