By STEVEN VAUGHAN, 750 THE GAME
The Chauncey Billups coaching era has been rocky at best.
Billups career record with the Portland Trail Blazers is 60-104 and no playoff appearances after making the playoffs the previous eight seasons under former coach Terry Stotts.
The jury is still out on Billups as head coach. The roster hasn’t been as good the past two seasons, but the Trail Blazers have a fan base that expects the team to be better and compete for the playoffs.
Billups was interviewed during the Blazers’ final Summer League game on ESPN on Sunday and talked about his first two seasons as an NBA head coach.
“I’ve only been head coach for two years,” he said. “But it’s been a heck of a two years. It’s been a lot of ups and downs, a lot of influx. But I’ve learned so much along the way.”
Billups says that having team-oriented players has helped earn him some respect.
“I’ve been lucky to have great players that buy in to what I’m trying to do,” Billups added. “For me, I just try to teach. No matter who’s on the floor, they know my intentions at all times.”
When Billups was hired there was an optimism that he could become a great coach — after all, he was a great player, and one of best leaders on championship-caliber rosters. He was a five-time all star and NBA Finals MVP with the Detroit Pistons.
Billups said he likes to take what he did on the court and use it as a coach.
“I see the game the same way I played the game. That’s unselfishly — on both ends of the floor. Playing together. Being vocal. Talking. Being very very highly competitive.”
This is far from a make-or-break season for Billups as the Blazers aren’t expected to do much with the looming trade of Damian Lillard on the horizon. But with the team the Blazers have next season, including younger, hungry players, Billups may actually be the right coach for this roster as he tries to teach the youth how to be professional day-in, day-out on the NBA level.
Check out Billups’s full appearance on the ESPN broadcast below.