Ratto: Steve Nash is a terrible idea. Wait, no he isn't. Or maybe…

All you can do is guess and, if it works out, pretend you knew all along
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There are tons of reasons why Steve Nash's hiring to coach the Brooklyn Nets makes perfect sense, and plenty more why this is a potential suicide mission. The key in understanding it is in accepting the fact that nobody has any real idea until it happens.

The National Basketball Association is demonstrably more open-minded about hiring guys straight from shorts or a broadcast table to the coach's chair, and as a result the failure/success rate runs about 50 percent — and that's because hiring coaches is very often a coin flip done by someone who doesn't make basketball as his (or her) primary skill. The owner.

Example: Mark Jackson. No experience running an NBA team. Gets hired in Oakland. Is a really good idea for a while until he runs afoul of Joe Lacob, then is a bad idea. He is replaced by Steve Kerr. No experience coaching an NBA team though he did get to be the general manager in Phoenix under carny barker and part-time weirdo Bobby Sarver. Gets hired in Oakland. Is a really good idea for a longer while until his players all break themselves.

Thus, Steve Nash seems like the obvious copycat hire by Brooklyn owner Joe Tsai and general manager Sean Marks. Nash did time with the Warriors as a free-range consultant and developed a dandy relationship with Kevin Durant, who will be unveiled in Brooklyn right around Christmas. How he gets on with Kyrie Irving is an open question, though because while indisputably bright, he can be a bit mercurial. Which is to say occasionally baffling.

In other words, Durant made this choice as much as Tsai or Marks because the numbers on his contract allow him in the room. He gets a fringe playoff team led by Spencer Dinwiddie and Caris Levert that gets an immediate kick when Durant and Irving retake the court, and at that point this becomes as hot an item in New York as the Knicks. Okay, almost as hot, because the Knicks still haven't failed spectacularly enough to lose their place of primacy in town, thus proving that all fan bases in all cities can refuse to see the reality before their eyes with equal facility.

The Nets have done all they can do now, which is make themselves as interesting as they have been since Julius Erving on good knees roamed the earth. They are in many ways like the Los Angeles Clippers, going in hard to dent the Lakers' hegemony in Los Angeles. Nash is a new age name, nontraditional yet very inside the fairway, like Kerr. He hasn't done this enough to become stale or jaded yet, and this Nets roster was pushed as far as Kenny Atkinson would be allowed to take them, much as Jackson did. And then regime change (new owner/new alpha player) eliminated his job. Well, him, to be more honest about it.

Thus, the potential downside. Kerr had an open locker room before him, with nobody who had a playoff resume nearly as glittery as Durant's or Irving's. Nash gets the benefits and baggage of that, and we'll find out before too long which weighs more. That's this can go south as well as north, personalities being the funny things they are. And failure won't happen because the characters involved failed to be true to their natures, but because of those natures. Maybe Durant wants to be an uber-coach. Maybe Irving does. Maybe Tsai does. Big visions sometimes clash, and sometimes big egos flex.

And when they do, the coach is the one who gets necked.

In other words, Steve Nash makes sense in a league that has Kerr and Taylor Jenkins and Lloyd Pierce and Nick Nurse and Brad Stevens and Luke Walton and the man Nash is moving one seat down the bench, Jacque Vaughn. Greg Popovich is separate from all coaching discussions for reasons of rings, but everywhere else, Steve Nash is a very defensible hire. But it still could turn out to be a mistake for reasons that have nothing to do with him, or really anyone else. People gonna be what they gonna be, and sometimes people don't get on with people. All you can do is guess and, if it works, pretend you knew it all along.