Mike Krzyzewski showed last week that his greatest strength and weakness is the power in his own voice. It was enough to lead him astray during his attempt to teach a player on another team a lesson about humility.
Coach K was admonished for admonishing Oregon guard Dillon Brooks for showing off, and showing up Duke, in the final seconds of the Ducks’ 82-68 win in the Sweet 16. “You’re too good of a player to do that,” Krzyzewski said while the two teams shook hands after the game.
Brooks immediately apologized, which suggested he agreed with his assessment. All was fine until Krzyzewski lied about details of the exchange while downplaying the incident. To me, Krzyzewski lied to protect Brooks, not himself, in an effort to spare the kid unwanted attention.
The moment shouldn’t have become national news, but I understood how it could. Krzyzewski apologized for his actions, and Brooks regretted revealing details of the exchange.
And that’s the thing about Krzyzewski. Even when he’s wrong, he’s usually right.