Tom Brady’s name is legendary in New England.
The 14-time NFL Pro Bowler and four-time NFL MVP helped bring six Super Bowl rings to Foxborough, MA.
Brady shocked many in the football world when he left the New England Patriots via free agency this past spring and joined the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Brady left a lasting legacy. But he traded in Boston’s lobster rolls for Tampa’s Clearwater Beach.
Yesterday I asked Philadelphia 76ers head coach Brett Brown his thoughts on Brady’s legacy alongside his former Pats head coach, Bill Belichick and if he actually liked the Patriots.
“I’m happy if you wanted to talk about lobstering and stuff like that, I could’ve gone there too,” joked Brown.
“Yes to your Patriots question. You grow up in New England, it is sacrilegious if you don’t have in the fall a Patriots shirt, hat…it’s sacrilegious if you don’t wear a Celtics shirt or hat in the winter, and it ends up the same way with Red Sox as spring rolls around. And so, the Patriots you followed them as a kid as many do in New England – you know, from my perspective when you look at sort of, the success and the respect that I have for Coach Belichick and you know, the from afar what Tom Brady did.”
Born and raised in the state of Maine, Brown led South Portland High School to a 27–0 record and a State Class A Title in his senior year. Brown’s New England ties run deep. Brown played four seasons at Boston University under head coach, Rick Pitino. During his senior year in 1983, Brown and the Boston Terriers made their first appearance in the NCAA Tournament since 1959 and by the time he graduated, Brown had compiled the fourth-most assists in school history.
Brett Brown also was a San Antonio Spurs assistant coach under head coach Gregg Popovich, Brown was part of four of the Spurs’ championship wins in 1999, 2003, 2005 and 2007. “I’m proud of my Spurs background,” he told me.
“And you know; there are a lot of parallels with those two organizations about just to sustain winning and championships and so on.”
Many compare the Spurs’ run in the NBA to the Patriots’ run in the NFL. The Popovich and Belichick coaching comparisons are plentiful.
Appearing on the Scoop B Radio Podcast, former Spurs guard, Devin Brown also sees the comparison. “I’d have to think so,” he told me.
“Pop doesn’t look at any kind of excuse, and I can guarantee you, in practice, when he’s screaming and going over film, he’s saying, “I don’t care who’s on the floor, we just need five guys out there. And of the five guys that are going to be out there, if you execute and do the things that we ask, we’ll be successful.”
The longest tenured coach in the NBA, Popovich became head coach of the Spurs in 1996 and cleaned house by trading Dennis Rodman to the Chicago Bulls for Will Perdue. During his tenure in San Antonio, he guided David Robinson, Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili and Kawhi Leonard.