Gregg Popovich: I’m not recruiting free agents at midnight, I’ll be in bed
Gregg Popovich is one of the most successful coaches in NBA history. And if the only way the five-time champion is going to add a sixth Larry O’Brien trophy to his collection is by staying up until midnight to talk to free agents, Pop wants no part of it.
The NBA free agency period will officially begin at midnight on Tuesday. By rule, that is when teams are allowed to start recruiting players and negotiating with them. But anyone who wants to talk to Popovich will have to wait a few more hours.
“I’m not calling anyone at midnight,” he said Monday, per Buck Harvey of the San Antonio Express-News. “I’ll be in bed. And if that’s the difference in someone coming or not coming, then I don’t want them.”
I find that hard to believe.
The Spurs are considered one of the favorites to land four-time NBA All-Star forward LaMarcus Aldridge, who is the top prize on the free agent market. Marc Spears of Yahoo Sports reports that Tim Duncan — who is apparently coming back for another season — will join Tony Parker and Popovich to meet with Alridge on Wednesday morning.
While that meeting will likely be held during business hours, I doubt Popovich would ignore Aldridge’s call if it came at midnight. The guy may treat sideline reporters like crap, but he knows San Antonio’s championship window is closing. Don’t let the always-irritable Pop fool you.