Thoughts On Jerry Sloan
One day, he signed a contract extension.
Hours later, he resigned.
Longtime Utah Jazz coach Jerry Sloan no longer will pace the sidelines after calling it a career Thursday. The news shocked the NBA world and could greatly alter one of the league’s pillar franchise.
Sloan has been on the Jazz bench since 1988. He compiled 1,221 wins, third most in NBA history, and had 10 seasons of at least 50 wins. In Utah, Sloan won six division championships and led the Jazz to two NBA Finals appearances. In 2009, Sloan was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame. Sloan will be missed by many.
In today’s question of the day, we ask our panel what their reaction was to Sloan stepping down.
I was shocked hearing the news, then sad watching the press conference. Seeing everyone crying during the announcement, you realized that this wasn’t what anyone wanted but what Sloan felt was necessary. He deserved to go out in a better way, to be cheered at other arenas, to be celebrated at home by one of the most loyal fan bases in the NBA. To leave the Jazz so unceremoniously on a random Thursday afternoon, that just isn’t right. The Hall of Famer earned a better exit, a grander departure. Sadly, he didn’t get it.
I was stunned, but we shouldn’t have been surprised. Like the Jazz owner said Thursday, all good things must end. Bobby Cox stepped down from the Atlanta Braves last autumn. The Titans jettisoned Jeff Fisher last month. So it shouldn’t come as a shock that Sloan is leaving the Jazz. He stayed ahead of the posse for 23 years, and while Utah provided a supportive working environment that is rare in the NBA, the fact remains that it’s a player’s league. If LeBron doesn’t want Erik Spoelstra, Spoelstra is out. If Kevin Durant doesn’t want Scotty Brooks, Brooks is out. If Deron Williams doesn’t want Jerry Sloan, Sloan is out. Sloan avoided mutiny for almost a quarter century, but the law of the NBA jungle stretches even to Salt Lake City. All good things must end.
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