Mike Bibby’s imprint has been on six of Shadow Mountain (Phoenix) High School’s seven boys basketball state championships.
The only question left after Saturday’s predictable 64-38 4A championship blowout of Glendale Deer Valley at Gila River Arena is, “What will the coach do next?”
Even with guards Jaelen House (Arizona State signee) and Jovan Blacksher (Grand Canyon) playing their last games, cementing their legacy with four titles in four years, there is plenty of talent returning for Bibby to keep the dynasty rolling into 2020.
But Bibby has had his eyes on the college and NBA game, hoping a coaching opportunity comes up.
“I hope I move on to bigger and better things,” Bibby said after Saturday’s game. “I think we did good here. I think it’s time for me to move on. I had dreams of being an NBA player. Now I want to be a coach. Hopefully, I can move up.
“College or NBA, it doesn’t matter. I’d like to be a coach at the next level, whichever one it is.”
Shadow Mountain’s six-year run under Bibby produced a 140-6 record versus Arizona opponents, one of the best runs in Arizona high school basketball history.
For now, he was in the middle of another title.
Bibby was the senior point guard on Shadow Mountain’s first state championship in 1996. He led the University of Arizona to its only national championship the next season. He had a 14-year NBA career.
He has coached Shadow Mountain to five state titles in six years under his watch. The only year Shadow Mountain didn’t win it while Bibby was in control was in 2015, when his son, Michael, missed the second half of that season with a knee injury.
Shadow Mountain’s title run has been built on scrambling, frenetic, help defense, crashing the boards, and getting out and running teams off the court.
That was the case early Saturday when the Matadors put Deer Valley in a 7-0 hole and never let it come up for air.
“I think we played a complete game tonight,” Bibby said.
Soon, the score was 13-3. Deer Valley managed only one field goal on seven attempts in the first quarter and got down by as much as 23-5 in the first three minutes of the second quarter without House and Blackher going off.
Shadow Mountain led 33-17 at the half with Blacksher scoring only two points, taking just one shot, spending most of the second quarter on the bench with three fouls. House had eight points but he was just 2 of 9 shooting. But he had four steals.
Christian Allen (nine points) and 6-foot-3 freshman guard Devontes Cobbs (six points and a block) helped make up the difference, along with senior wing Jalen Williams doing the dirty work, diving for loose balls.
House spent much of the second half way out near midcourt, dribbling the ball, waiting to seize his moment to pounce and attack the lane.
“Once we got ahead, we tried to bring them out a little bit to try to get them out of their zone,” Bibby said. “It worked for a while. We were able to spread it out and get the layups we were looking for.”
A 10-0 run gave Shadow Mountain a 45-17 lead.
House (15 points, five steals) and Blacksher (seven points, six assists) took a seat at the end of the bench after a minute went by in the final quarter.
When it was a 62-31 lead after Allen’s 3 with 6:37 left, Bibby emptied his bench as a running clock was used for the rest of the game.
“We completed our mission,” said House, who won four state titles in four years and will go on to play at Arizona State, where his dad, Eddie, still holds the single-game scoring record (61 points). “We’ve got four rings.
“I think we’re the best dynasty Arizona has ever seen.”