Being called a coach on the floor has long been considered one of the game's highest compliments. But few of those receiving votes in our poll concerning players best suited to become an NBA head coach were thrilled by their selection. "I've thought about doing it," says Chicago guard Steve Kerr, who was chosen by two of the 29 pollees, one from each team, "but everyone I talk to tells me not to."
The winner was Jazz point guard John Stockton, who got eight votes, four more than Pistons guard Joe Dumars. An All-Star in eight of his 12 seasons, Stockton was called by one coach "the heir apparent at Utah." He is not too eager, however, to ascend to the throne. "Obviously being in the league for so long, you do have something to offer as a coach," Stockton says. "But I don't see that as being in the cards right now for me. I think [my coaching] would be with younger kids."
The constant pressure from fans, agents, the front office and the media makes the job less than appealing for most players—especially stars, who are usually financially secure when they retire. It's such a tough job, in fact, that several respondents considered only the toughest men to fill it. How else to explain the only other multiple vote-getter (who, by the way, actually wants to be a head coach): Detroit's 38-year-old enforcer, Rick Mahom?