Wednesday, June 11, 2014
Championship Leadership of Pat Riley
From the Stanley Cup Final, to the NBA Final, we come to Pat Riley, president of the Miami Heat. In the 1990s heyday of the Chicago Bulls, he fought fiercely, as coach of the New York Knicks, to knock off his nemesis Phil Jackson. He never succeeded. The Bulls won three championships in a row, twice in fact, in that breathtaking decade. I knew that Riley came up with the phrase Three-Peat, as his Lakers aimed to win three in a row in the 1980s. They didn't, but he had trademarked the phrase, which meant he could cash in with royalties from any formal use of it. He couldn't beat the Bulls, but drew cash from theirs and the NBA's winnings. Ironically, Jackson won another Three-Peat with the Lakers once, and was poised for a second.
As a player, and as a leader in two different capacities - coach and executive - Riley has won championships. At this very time, his Heat is gunning for a Three-Peat, caught in the midst of a rematch Final with the San Antonio Spurs. The Heat are so good that they seem like they can just switch it on and win ballgames. It's hard to see the Spurs stopping them from their destiny with a Three-Peat. But let's see.