Boston Celtics coach Brad Stevens conducted a Q&A with Men's Fitness. If you can get past the dapper-looking photo, Stevens discusses his calm sideline demeanor ("My philosophy is simply that you do 99 percent of your work behind the scenes, and when the game comes around, hopefully you can perform with a feeling of being well prepared."), the role of diet in the NBA ("Nutrition and sleep are two of the most underrated things, especially with younger kids."), and the benefits of the weight room ("Strength is never a negative.")
A couple of the most insightful exchanges:
Q: What are the qualities you look for in a prospective player?
A: A baseline level of talent, then you’re looking for guys that are into the team. Their presence in the locker room raises everybody else on the court. There are a few teams that just exude that. And there are a lot of us who are striving to get to the point where you have that perfect mix.
Q: If I’m a player and I’m not hitting my shots, do you bench me or leave me in to work it out?
A: Production is the bottom line. If the team—not necessarily you—statistically produces when you’re on the court, then you’re going to win. But you want to build confidence in your players. As a coach, you have to have a short-term memory when it comes to shooting. Let it fly and move on.