Erin Popovich, the 67-year-old wife of San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich, has passed away, and NBA players and fans have rallied around the coach affectionately known as “pop.” Some photos have emerged of Erin Popovich; however the couple was intensely private. However, you can see a photo of her both above and later in this article.
Erin Popovich, died on April 18, 2018, the team confirmed in a statement. Many fans and even a top player expressed shock at hearing the news about Erin’s death.
Although the death surprised a lot of fans, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, writing on Twitter, Erin Popovich died after an “extended illness.” The San Antonio Express News provided further detail, reporting that Erin Popovich “died Wednesday after a lengthy battle with a respiratory illness.” The newspaper reported that she had suffered from the respiratory ailment since the mid-1990s and it “prevented her from joining her husband at many events she likely would have attended had she been healthy.” Little else has been released about Erin Popovich’s cause of death.
The Express News further reported that Spurs guard Danny Green was “stunned” by the death and told the newspaper “he had seen signs that she was getting stronger,” adding, “It’s really hard to believe. This summer, she was just able to travel and I was so happy for him and her to be able to get away.”
Here is another photo of Erin Popovich with her husband.
“The news comes as a shock to players and fans — although it’s being reported she’d been ill for an extended period … Coach Popovich hadn’t said anything publicly,” TMZ reported. Gregg and Erin Popovich had two children together named Jill and Micky.
It’s clear that many people were not expecting the news. The team is taking on the Golden State Warriors Thursday night in San Antonio. However, it’s now been announced that Gregg Popovich will not coach the game. “Erin and Gregg were best friends who were together for 40 years, and Erin’s impact and influence on our organization, on our families, on our players and their families will be felt for years to come,” said Spurs general manager R.C. Buford to ESPN.
“I spoke to Pop this morning. He’s overwhelmed by the support. He’s very appreciative of the love that’s been shared with our group and with him and his family and Erin’s family. As you’d expect from Pop, he wants our focus to be about the game today, about this series, and that’s what today will be about. We’ll miss Erin a lot, and the focus of our team will be on supporting Pop. But we’ve got basketball to get back to.”
Members of the Spurs’ family offered tributes to Erin Popovich.
“We mourn the loss of Erin,” said Spurs GM R.C. Buford in a statement. “She was a strong, wonderful, kind, intelligent woman who provided love, support and humor to all of us.”
Gregg Popovich is known for his private manner. As an ESPN NBA writer noted in a 2012 article on Gregg Popovich’s privacy: “To most, this page contains simply words and sentences and photos. Not to Gregg Popovich. He sees booby traps. Daggers. An interrogator’s metal chair under a bare lightbulb.” The article noted that Popovich steers away from casting media attention on himself. In that light, it’s perhaps not surprising that so many people were caught unaware that his wife was sick.
NewsOK noted that Gregg “Popovich ran the Spurs’ practice Wednesday.”
Source: Heavy Sports