Great coaching isn't missed until it's gone

Updated: February 20, 2005, 11:14 AM ET
By Bill Walton | ESPN Insider
Phil Jackson seems to be getting more popular with each pass of the sun across the heavens even though his heavily favored teams lost the last two championships to teams with decidedly less talent. Maybe he's following Elvis' career path where the longer he's gone from the scene, the better, more popular and richer, he becomes.

This scenario is the result of his unique skill and talent, a commodity that is sadly becoming a lost art. The talent is the ability to teach and develop a product. I'm always amazed at the short-shrift great coaches get when they're actually producing. It's usually after they're gone that people seem to miss them the most. How many NBA championships did Jordan, Pippen, Shaq and Kobe win without Phil?

Zero.

ESPN.com NBA Insider and Basketball Hall of Famer Bill Walton will again serve as a game analyst for ESPN's NBA telecasts. He joined ESPN and ABC Sports' in their inaugural season of NBA coverage in 2002.

ALSO SEE