No Sympathy for a Sick Don Nelson

by November 24, 2009

by Marcel Mutoni / @marcel_mutoni

There comes a time in most coaches’ careers when they wear out their welcome in a particular city. Happens to the best of them. For Don Nelson in Oakland, it is well past that time.

The man has pneumonia (and may even have tested positive for swine flu), meaning he will not join the team on its upcoming two-game road swing. He could possibly be out longer than that.

For some of the local media, it’s an opportunity to remind everyone that now would be an opportune time for Don Nelson to leave town, for good.

From the Contra Costa Times:

Pneumonia, they say. Nothing funny about that. Nothing too surprising, either. Nellie is 69, and his latest health scare will keep him from coaching the Warriors for at least the next two games. How about forever?

Retiring now would make for an understandable and graceful exit. No deceit needed. No lawsuits. No more sighs at a roster that gets younger while he gets ornerier. Retiring would be for Nelson’s own good — as well as the Warriors’ — after experiencing lots of lows and occasional highs during his two tenures as coach.

The article points out how unlikely of a scenario it is for Nellie to walk away, with millions on the table and within shouting distance of the record for most wins ever by a coach.

Here’s to getting better, coach. And coming back to the sidelines stronger than ever. Someone’s gotta say it.