In the last post (here, if you are lazy) we looked at the powerful personal connections new Utah Jazz head coach Quin Snyder has from his days as a player and assistant. Who you know is one thing. What you know is another. The missing piece of the puzzle is applying what you know and getting results from them. Ideally, a coach does what? A coach is supposed to instruct, game plan, inform, and teach his players so that they become BETTER. The tricky thing is trying to gauge improvement. Is a player better because he doesn't get any more silly fouls, or was he better when he was more aggressive on defense?
Better is subjective here. But what's not subjective is that Coach Snyder is a somewhat connected head coach. Some of the following names are important, others are less so. All of these guys are players that Coach Snyder has coached before (either as a head coach at the NCAA or NBA-DL level, or as an assistant coach at the NBA and NCAA and European levels). He was a part of their lives for at least a season. They had to listen to him. Some guy better. Some did not. Some guys learned. Some tuned him out.
Who did what? I don't know. But who they are is something I do know. (Here are the most notable 60).
|1||Al Horford||Hawks||NBA||16||DeMarr Johnson||Toros||NBA-DL|
|2||Allan Ray||Toros||NBA-DL||17||DeMarre Carroll||Hawks||NBA|
|3||Alonzo Gee||Toros||NBA-DL||18||Derek Fisher||Lakers||NBA|
|4||Andre Iguodala||76ers||NBA||19||Dwayne Jones||Toros||NBA-DL|
|5||Andres Nocioni||76ers||NBA||20||Elton Brand||Duke, 76ers, Hawks||NCAA, NBA|
|6||Andrew Bynum||Lakers||NBA||21||Evan Turner||76ers||NBA|
|7||Anton Ponkrashov||CSKA||Euro||22||Grant Hill||Duke||NCAA|
|8||Arthur Johnson||Missouri||NCAA||23||Ian Mahinmi||Toros||NBA-DL|
|9||Blake Ahearn||Toros||NBA-DL||24||Jeff Capel III||Duke||NCAA|
|10||Chris Collins||Duke||NCAA||25||James White||Toros||NBA-DL|
|11||Cherokee Parks||Duke||NCAA||26||Jason Kapono||76ers, Lakers||NBA|
|12||Clarence Gilbert||Missouri||NCAA||27||Jeff Teague||Hawks||NBA|
|13||Corey Maggette||Duke||NCAA||28||Jrue Holiday||76ers||NBA|
|14||Danny Manning||Clippers||NBA||29||Kareem Rush||Missouri||NCAA|
|15||Darius Washington||Toros||NBA-DL||30||Keyon Dooling||Missouri||NCAA|
|31||Kobe Bryant||Lakers||NBA||46||Rickey Paulding||Missouri||NCAA|
|32||Kyle Korver||Hawks||NBA||47||Rod Benson||Toros||NBA-DL|
|33||Linas Kleiza||Missouri||NCAA||48||Ron Harper||Clippers||NBA|
|34||Loren Woods||Toros||NBA-DL||49||Roshown McLeod||Duke||NCAA|
|35||Louis Williams||76ers, Hawks||NBA||50||Sasha Kaun||CSKA||Euro|
|36||Marcus Williams||Toros||NBA-DL||51||Shane Battier||Duke||NCAA|
|37||Mark Jackson||Clippers||NBA||52||Shelvin Mack||Hawks||NBA|
|38||Metta World Peace||Lakers||NBA||53||Sonny Weems||CSKA||Euro|
|39||Milos Teodosic||CSKA||Euro||54||Spencer Hawes||76ers||NBA|
|40||Nenad Krstic||CSKA||Euro||55||Thaddeus Young||76ers||NBA|
|41||Pau Gasol||Lakers||NBA||56||Thomas Gardner||Missouri||NCAA|
|42||Paul Millsap||Hawks||NBA||57||Trajan Langdon||Duke||NCAA|
|43||Pero Antic||Hawks||NBA||58||Troy Bell||Toros||NBA-DL|
|44||Pops Mensah-Bonsu||Toros||NBA-DL||59||Viktor Khryapa||CSKA||Euro|
|45||Ramon Sessions||Lakers||NBA||60||William Avery||Duke||NCAA|
What jumps out? Well, that he's coached Brand three times before jumps out to me. There are two other guys he has coached before who are still currently in the NBA. One guy he has coached once, and is a big fan, is DeMarre -- who also went to Missouri for ball. Though, it should be noted, that Snyder was no longer at that school when Carroll was there.
Sometimes players feel more comfortable going to a team that has a coach that they like, have had good prior experiences with, or have heard good things from. I know Jazz fans wouldn't mind seeing some of these guys on our squad in the next few seasons.
Which ones are going to be on the free agency market in the next month? Well . . . Brand is available. So is Hawes. So are Gasol and Battier. And NEXT year things go nuts with Carroll, Millsap, and Lou all being Unrestricted Free Agents. Heck, even Pero will be a Restricted one. If the team wants to add a bunch of Hawks players to reunite them with Snyder they could do so.
Of course, one of the criticisms of Snyder back in his Missou days was that he was unable to handle the management aspects that a NCAA coach has to perform -- basically recruiting players. It's not his job to really do that at the NBA level when we have an actual General Manager in place. But these connections that he has cultivated over the years will help establish the types of players we can add in the future.
It's still up to the GM to make the big moves. But it's the little things that count too.
And yeah, I'm kind of rooting for the Jazz to sign Elton Brand now. I'm almost certain that Snyder got a call from him today to say congrats on the new job. I'm not against Brand being used as a mentor for our young guys. He could REALLY help Rudy Gobert figure out how to play defense with your arms and not your body.