Would Doug Collins excelled and won multiple championships with Jordan and Pippen if he hadn't of been replaced by Phil Jackson?
Thoughts? This has always made me curious. I respect him as a coach and love how he has handled Philly. (FYI he was drafted #1 out of his class to Philly)
Here is Phil Jackson as the assistant coach to Doug Collins.
"Doug Collins was fired as coach of the Chicago Bulls in 1989 and replaced by assistant Phil Jackson. But if there were ever any hard feelings, as some thought at the time, you'd never know it from Collins' "
"The Bulls had plenty to feel good about for the next season. They had a popular coach in Doug Collins, an up and coming batch of young players (Pippen, Grant), and the best player in the game in Michael Jordan. And due to good moves by management, the Bulls also had three first round picks in the upcoming draft. Which is why it came as a shock to everyone when managing partner Jerry Reinsdorf fired coach Collins and replaced him with assistant coach Phil Jackson."
"The rumor at the time was that Michael Jordan had initiated the firing, which was not true. The owners told Jordan of the move beforehand, but Jordan was unsure about it due to the strong season the Bulls just had. However, both Jerry Reinsdorf and Jerry Krause believed that the team had peaked under Collins and a new coach was needed to bring the team to the next level. Michael was also uncertain about the choice of Phil Jackson, since Jackson had told Michael on several occasions that he was scoring too much."
"On Dec 17th, 1988, Doug Collins was ejected early in a game against the Bucks. Phil took over as coach and put more focus on defense while leaving the offense alone. The players responded well to the changes and finished the game with a big win. Horace Grant said later in an interview “It was like we were let out of a cage. We won the game because we were so relaxed — and we knew that Phil should become a head coach.” Phil Jackson had his first taste of being a head coach, and he liked it."
"Collins became worried that the Bulls were grooming Jackson to replace him, and he was right. The move to replace Collins did come as a surprise to most people, but it had been in the works behind the scenes."
"At the core of my vision was getting the players to think more for themselves. Collins had kept the younger players, especially Scottie Pippen and Horace Grant, on a tight rein, frequently yelling at them when they made mistakes. Throughout the game, they'd look over at the bench, nervously trying to read his mind."
"There are other parts in the book where Jackson talks about Doug "Play a Day" Collins, who was forever trying to come up with different ways to get players besides Jordan involved. And he talks about how some of the coaches on Collins' staff were brilliant. His list includes Tex Winter and Johnny Bach, but not Collins."
- Phil Jackson's Book