Some NBA coaches ignore the criticism they face in the media, but not Boston head coach Joe Mazzulla.
Mazzulla decided to get back at ESPN analyst Kendrick Perkins, who took a shot at him after the Celtics’ loss to the Nuggets earlier this month.
The coach sat down at the media podium and re-confirmed the Celtics’ injury report by saying that Kristaps Porzingis was questionable, Luke Kornet was doubtful, and Al Horford was out.
A reporter then jokingly asked if Mazzulla “could please give a doctor’s opinion on that”, to which he replied, ““I’m a bird brain. You know I can’t do that.”
For context, this is what Perk said – which must have been living in Mazzulla’s head rent free since he said it.
“They have two Joe Mazzullas,” Perkins said on NBA Countdown. “They have the one that got the philosophy of we’re going to get up more 3s than you. When they hit them, he looks great. Then you have the other Joe Mazzulla, who just stands over there, and you wonder. If you take his brain out and you put it in a bird, the bird is going to start flying backwards. You got that Joe Mazzulla.”
After taking over as head coach of C’s after the team fired Ime Udoka last season, Mazzulla has copped his fair share of criticism, but says he feels more comfortable in the role in his second term.
“Last year I never got to be myself because I didn’t know what I was going to be as a head coach,” Mazzulla told The Boston Globe. “…Now I know I’m really good at what I do and I trust that,” Mazzulla said. “I’m part of a great organization and I know we’ve got a great chance to win. And I’m very comfortable because I know we have great players.”