Houston Rockets head coach Mike D'Antoni has developed a special relationship with his superstar James Harden, one perhaps even his own wife; Laurel, his lifetime sounding board, has grown to envy.
While Laurel and Mike are married off the court, the marriage between The Beard and the offensive genius has been one of the league's best weddings since Michael Jordan and Phil Jackson.
More than anything, the complete understanding between the two — a player that can take the coach's plan to fruition and a coach that can allow the player to express his offensive talents in the most efficient of ways.
Laurel, who hasn't had to share the love since Steve Nash made the Phoenix Suns rotate at a galactic pace, knows her husband has developed something special with the MVP frontrunner.
“He's just morphed because of his players,” Laurel says of Mike, according to Howard Beck of Bleacher Report. “My husband is in looove with James Harden. I mean, I would like to have a little bit of that love that he's giving James Harden in my household. But I understand why. Because Mike said he's the best offensive player he's ever, ever, ever coached.”
Nash; who flourished into a two-time MVP under D'Antoni, noted what has made the long-tenured coach so special.
“I think it's just Mike's ability to read his team, the evolution of the game, the pieces that he has and how they fit together,” Nash said. “So in some ways, I'm not surprised. That's part of Mike's brilliance, is his ability to adapt and adjust and tweak, according to who he has and how the pieces fit together.”