It got so ridiculous that sometimes agents and players find out about trades and decisions from Woj, not their team. So when the news dropped Steve Nash will be the Nets' new head coach, everyone's first reaction was shock. This came out of nowhere. Then we went to - wait, he doesn't have any coaching experience!
“This is white privilege. This doesn’t happen for a black man. No experience whatsoever on any level as a coach, and you get a Brooklyn Nets job.”
Steven A Smith
With everything going on in the United States right now, it wasn't hard to predict this would be talked about a lot, particularly because this isn't the Detroit Pistons job - we are talking about KD and Kyrie in New York. It is true; Steve Nash has no experience in coaching. After his playing days, he was a consultant for the Warriors and served as the GM for Canada's senior national team. But Charles Barkley was quick to notice this has happened "for a black man" before.
“This doesn’t happen to black guys, and I’m like that happened to Doc Rivers, Jason Kidd, it happened to Derek Fisher. I was really disappointed. If you have a responsibility, especially when talking about race, you can’t be full of crap; you gotta be honest and fair.”
In addition to everything Barkley said, this is mostly "one of the greatest point guards + double MVP privilege." If this were a random white guy who played in the NBA, maybe Steven A would have a case. But we are talking about Steve frikin' Nash here. After letting the dust settle a little bit, the Nets introduced Nash as their head coach yesterday. His reaction didn't surprise anyone familiar with his career and the player he was. Here's Nash on skipping the line.
“Well, I did skip the line, frankly, but at the same time, I think leading an NBA team for almost two decades is pretty unique. So while I haven't necessarily learned some of the skills that I'll definitely seek to understand and learn, as far as the technical aspects of coaching, I was never far from that.”
One of the things Sean Marks pointed out was that Nash is fully aware of his lack of experience. He insisted that Jacques Vaughn stays on the coaching staff as his lead assistant - and he did, becoming the highest paid assistand in the NBA. The other thing Steven A. mentioned was white priviledge. Nash didn't avoid that conversation either.
“I have benefitted from white privilege. Our society has a lot of ground to make up... I’m not sure this is an example that purely fits that conversation.”
Steve Nash, Twitter
A great answer from Nash, and I hope we can put this conversation to bed. Will Nash be a good coach, we have no idea. But hiring someone with his basketball biography, character, and intelligence is the worst possible example for adressing white priviledge or skipping the line. To quote Steven A Smith.
STOP IT. JUST STOP IT!