Because We All Know Nothing Beats New York (Or Jersey)


By Daniel Friedman
» More Columns

Nostalgia is in the air!

With Chris Mullin returning to St. John’s, we take a look at 10 local athletes who came back to lead their former teams:

10. John MacLean, Devils

John MacLean during his short tenure as Devils head coach (Photo by Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images)

John MacLean during his short tenure as Devils head coach (Photo by Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images)

One of the leading scorers in franchise history, his tenure as Devils’ coach didn’t quite go as well. MacLean was hired in June 2010, and fired just three months into the season.

9. Jason Kidd, Nets

Jason Kidd (Photo by Steven Freeman/NBAE via Getty Images)

Jason Kidd (Photo by Steven Freeman/NBAE via Getty Images)

Coached the Nets to the playoffs, then bailed. It was ugly, and it’s something Nets fans won’t forgive him for so easily — even if they do love him.

8. Butch Goring, Islanders

 Butch Goring of 'The 'Core of the Four' New York Islanders Stanley Cup championships takes part in a ceremony prior to a game against the Florida Panthers on March 2, 2008 at Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, New York. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Butch Goring of ‘The ‘Core of the Four’ New York Islanders Stanley Cup championships takes part in a ceremony prior to a game against the Florida Panthers on March 2, 2008 at Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, New York. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Goring, the “missing piece” of the Islanders’ dynasty of the 1980s, returned to coach the team for the 1999-2000 season and wasn’t fired until March of 2001. It was hardly his fault they stunk. Needless to say, his place in the hearts of Isles fans is still very much intact.

7. Dick McGuire, Knicks

Dick McGuire (Photo by NBA Photo Library/NBAE via Getty Images)

Dick McGuire (Photo by NBA Photo Library/NBAE via Getty Images)

A better player than a coach, to be sure, but McGuire’s return to the Knicks was certainly welcomed.

6. Bud Harrelson, Mets

Bud Harrelson  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Bud Harrelson (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

It started off well, as he replaced Davey Johnson as manager a quarter of the way into the 1990 season. The Mets finished with over 90 wins, and things were looking good. However, 1991 did not go as well, the Mets collapsed, and Harrelson was fired with about a week to go.

5. Yogi Berra, Yankees

Yogi Berra (Photo by J. Meric/Getty Images)

Yogi Berra (Photo by J. Meric/Getty Images)

Managed the Yankees to the 1964 World Series, where they lost in seven games to St. Louis. Was subsequently fired.

4. Phil Esposito, Rangers

We don't have any pics of Phil Esposito with the Rangers. So... here's one of him with Hulk Hogan. (Photo by Dave Sandford/Getty Images)

We don’t have any pics of Phil Esposito with the Rangers. So… here’s one of him with Hulk Hogan. (Photo by Dave Sandford/Getty Images)

Was the Rangers’ GM and coach during parts of the 1980s, and became known as “Trader Phil.” That wasn’t necessarily a compliment.

3. Willis Reed, Knicks

Willis Reed (Photo by Vernon Biever/NBAE via Getty Images)

Willis Reed (Photo by Vernon Biever/NBAE via Getty Images)

Coached the Knicks for one full season (1977-78) and then, only 14 games into the following year, he was gone.

2. Joe Girardi, Yankees

(Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Joe Girardi in some very prestigious company (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The former backup catcher turned manager led the Yanks to a World Series title in 2009. His decisions are often met with much skepticism and criticism, but he’s done really solid work during his tenure.

1. Chris Mullin, St. John’s

Chris Mullin speaks with CBS2's Otis Livingston following his introduction as new head coach of the St. John's Red Storm at Carnesecca Arena on April 1, 2015. (Photo by CBS2/WLNY)

Chris Mullin speaks with CBS2’s Otis Livingston following his introduction as new head coach of the St. John’s Red Storm at Carnesecca Arena on April 1, 2015. (Photo by CBS2/WLNY)

The prodigal son returns. Mullin, the school’s all-time leading scorer, is set to coach the Red Storm. It should be interesting, and I think it’ll turn out well.

Comments

Leave a Reply