As a first time head coach and leader of a respected franchise, Earl Watson, much like his young team, has plenty to prove.
Watson has begun to impose a certain culture with the Suns, made evident by the team’s tracking of high-fives this season. As the season is now underway, and Phoenix has already been historically torched by Russell Westbrook, Watson is having to emphasize another element of culture that he wants his players to embrace.
Earl Watson said the Suns should respect opponents but not admire them. He doesn’t like Suns to follow opponents on Twitter. #SunsVsWarriors
— Paul Coro (@paulcoro) October 30, 2016
This is what one might consider an ‘old school’ mentality. This dynamic definitely exists in basketball conversations today — with opinions of how the league has grown softer with more friends and allies and less attitude and enemies. The mentioning of Twitter is key, because this social media era is at the center of this new dynamic.
Watson has a few veterans who understand this mentality, like Tyson Chandler, Jared Dudley, and Leandro Barbosa. But his younger players that still need to develop, namely his stud talent in Devin Booker, are more so the target because they represent the social media era.
It doesn’t look like Watson is making it a mandatory team rule not to follow opponents on Twitter, but with this message he continues to instill the kind of mentality he wants his team to have.