Everyone would praise two top 4 finishes in a decade ?
I get what you're saying but to me what's more important than the entire resume of Pitino is where the program is now and the outlook of the next 2 to 3 years.
In this hypothetical scenario, if we had a top 6 and then a top 4 finish in the conference, I wouldn't really care what happened 5 years prior. Those finishes would tell me the program is very healthy and trending up and I'd commend Pitino for a good job.
The same would be true if we had the opposite situation with a very successful coach like Izzo or Painter. I wouldn't care if they have had a put together multiple years of success 5 years ago, if they put together two or three years in a row of bottom of the conference basketball I'd feel the program is trending down and in need of a coaching change.
Personally, I don't think Pitino should have gotten the leash he has up until this point, but that's neither here nor there. The program appears to be trending up with the talent on the roster and recruiting. Let's see how it pans out. I have high hopes this year.