Charley Rosen at FoxSports.com says that Larry Brown has a spotty history when it comes to turning shoot-first point guards like Stephon Marbury into pass-first point guards. (Brown eventually gave up in Philadelphia, letting Allen Iverson play shooting guard instead.)
Ahh, but you say, what about 2004 NBA Finals MVP Chauncey Billups? To which Rosen says: Billups is no Stephon Marbury.
Billups had previously been traded three times and failed to find a meaningful niche with Boston, Toronto, Denver, Orlando, and Minnesota. Billups bought into Brown's vision because he was desperate.
Yet Stephon Marbury is anything but desperate. He's a career 20-point scorer, a bona fide All-Star, a multi-millionaire, a hero in his hometown, and the self-proclaimed best point guard in the league. The disagreements between Brown and Marbury in the 2004 Olympics have been well-documented. Basically, it's the same-old, same-old Brown insisting that his stubborn shoot-first point guard become an authentic facilitator and play-maker, not to mention his dissatisfaction with Marbury's phantom defense.
Sure, both Marbury and Brown are currently mouthing the proper platitudes. Brown's the greatest coach. Marbury's a great talent. They both want to win. They have a good connection ... blah, blah, and blah.
It's a marriage made in hell.