Video: Spurs coach Gregg Popovich badgers, hugs Jeff Van Gundy during interview
Spurs coach Gregg Popovich badgered Jeff Van Gundy before eventually offering him a warm embrace during an in-game interview that aired between the third and fourth quarters of San Antonio’s Wednesday night game against Dallas.
The former NBA coach turned ESPN commentator approached the notoriously prickly Popovich with trepidation.
“You’re making me nervous,” Van Gundy said. “Seriously, I’ve never been so nervous in my life.”
Popovich repeatedly interrupted Van Gundy’s monologue, asking him what the question was. When Van Gundy said that his sideline reporter colleagues advised him to “explore [Popovich's] feelings” during the interview, the Hall of Fame coach nodded, paused for a second, and then reached over to hug Van Gundy with both arms.
After patting Van Gunday on the back, pointing a finger, and saying “I love you,” Popovich ended the interview and returned to his duties.
Popovich’s behavior during in-game interviews was discussed in a 2013 Sports Illustrated profile.