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Kemba Walker Saves Paul Silas’s Job (For Now)

I have to be honest. After reading a bunch of stories about the team during the week I was prepared to sit down Saturday night and write a piece on how Paul Silas might be the first coach to go in this abbreviated NBA season.

Personally, I think that we are too quick to call for someone’s job in this league. Guys need a chance to do their job. Anything less than a full season and training camp is not enough time for anyone to show what they can really do. Yes, I know Paul started last season, but he didn’t really have much of an offseason and training camp to work with.

That being said, having watched and followed this league of ours for a few decades I know the signs, and I know that owners/GMs have no problem canning anyone at any time. Some of the things that Silas said this week made me think the end is near:

“… [The starters have] just kind of given up now. I don’t know what to say.”

When asked what he could do to get an ice cold Boris Diaw going: "I really don't know.”

"We've got to have more toughness and we didn't (Friday). It's just not a good sign for us."

Overall, the stuff he said can be viewed as just him being honest about how he feels. What bothered me is that he sounded like he was/had given up. A coach that wants to stay employed is not going to bad-mouth his team too much. What he said along those lines I can live with, but it’s the frequency that he admits to not knowing that tells me he could be going soon.

Owners want to think that there is a chance that there sub-par team is going to turn it around. They want to believe that there coach has a plan; that he can fix whatever is wrong. They don’t want to hear that they don’t know.

After Saturday’s win over the Golden State Warriors I believe his Airness will be putting his Rolodex back in his desk for the time being.

Silas finally did the only thing you can do with a player that has been under performing like Boris Diaw has—you bench his sorry behind. Someone that isn’t producing doesn’t belong on the court. Guys like that just bring everyone else down.

What he needed is someone who would bring people up. If Saturday can be an indication, it looks like he might have it in rookie Kemba Walker. In the 112-100 win over Golden State he was 8-15 from the floor with 23 points, 4 boards, and 5 assists.

“Oh boy, it was just wonderful tonight to see the guys just play and just run the court,” Silas said. “We were talking about running and they did it tonight. A little change I thought really helped that, putting Kemba in. I think time is the key to life and it was the right time for him to get in there and he’s ready. He’s played like 11 or 12 games so far and he was ready.”

I hope your right Paul; not just for your sake, but for the sake of fans that are tired of losing too.