Tex Winter, innovative basketball coach, dead at age 96
Tex Winter, the innovative “Triangle Offense” pioneer who assisted Phil Jackson on NBA championship teams with the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers, has died. He was 96.
Winter’s family said he died Wednesday in Manhattan, where he began his coaching career at Kansas State in 1947 and led the Wildcats to two Final Fours and eight Big Seven/Eight titles as head coach from 1954-68.
“I learned so much from Coach Winter. He was a pioneer and a true student of the game,” Michael Jordan said in a statement emailed to the Chicago Tribune. “His triangle offence was a huge part of our six championships with the Bulls. He was a tireless worker. Tex was always focused on details and preparation and a great teacher. I was lucky to play for him. My condolences to his family.”
Former Lakers star Kobe Bryant called Winter a basketball genius “in every sense of the word.”
“My mentor. I sat with Tex & watched every minute of every game during our 1st season together. He taught me how to study every detail,” Bryant posted on Twitter.