Sports are analyzed more thoroughly now than ever before. There is a stat that helps define and understand nearly anything in between the lines of a field or court. Beyond stats, how players react, interact, and what they post on social media are now all factored into what could happen during the course of a game. The beauty of sports, however, is the unpredictability of them.
Human imperfections make stats that try to predict everything, flawed. Because no matter how statistically certain something is, a player can miss a shot simply because their morning drive was rough, or their coffee was old, or their home life was not in good shape that day.
Jonathan Moore’s the “Coaches’ Wives”, celebrates those people. The people that can not be accounted for in a formula. The families, and specifically wives, of those who coach or play in the games that are analyzed so thoroughly.
Jonathon Moore is a son of a coaches wife. He saw firsthand how much work went into the things behind the scenes. He saw how hard his mother worked in order to keep, not only her family together, but her extended family together, the team. He wanted to tell her story and the story so many women have to tell.
The documentary features Jeanie Buss, Kathy and Geno Auriemma, Meo and Rick Stansbury, Dave and Mindy Rice and many more hardworking wives and coaches. It flashes from wife to wife, each describing certain aspects of the work, physical and mental, that they go through on a consistent basis.
One of the interviewees in ‘Coaches’ Wives’, Jeanie Buss, talked mostly about her, now past, relationship with Phil Jackson. She even gave an interesting account of her first thoughts about hiring the all-time great coach in 1999.
“I said, ‘dad, that might be a mistake'”
“At that time we had Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant two of the biggest stars in the NBA and I thought adding a third star, a third diva, might throw everything over.”
Not only was she not yet interested romantically but she did not even think it was a good move to hire him! Luckily Dr. Buss went through with hiring him and won 3 championships despite his daughter’s warnings.
The film, while intertwined with interviews, mostly follows Meo Stansbury doing her normal routine as a wife of a coach. From making treats for the referees to getting the kids ready for school to visiting the practice facility, to taking her kids to their own sporting events.
Many of the women say they often feel like a single mother and struggle with having their own identity outside of the family. Being a coach or player is a time-consuming career choice. Fans expect their lives to be dedicated to that sport.
Every spare second was given to improving the likelihood of nabbing a win.
Life can not work like that when other people depend on you, however. The wives and families of those who are asked to give everything, need something as well. They need those spare seconds more than the fans. The balancing act of working hard and always being at work is one even the greatest trapeze artists would struggle with.
Ultimately, the love and seconds spent with those that sacrifice so much can be just as beneficial and helpful to winning as those extra hours watching film. The difference between winning and losing could easily come down to receiving a fresh lunch and kiss rather than having an empty stomach and given an icy stare.
Because as Rick Stansbury says of his wife,
“There is no coaches wife anywhere that pours more into the program than Meo does. She can’t get out there and make shots but she does everything else outside those lines that gives yourself, or your team, the best chance to win.”
This is why these women are so important and why Moore wanted to tell their stories. This documentary not only provides a better understanding of that dynamic but a newfound level of respect for those women.
You can watch the full ‘Coaches’ Wives’ movie on iTunes, Amazon, and many more platforms.
‘Coaches’ Wives’ trailer below comes courtesy of their official site where you can find much more about the film and those who made this insightful documentary.