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The Downbeat - 14 February 2011 - #425 - The What's Next For Sloan Edition?

   An old, but great, article on Tyrone Corbin from several years back when  the Jazz had played Minnesota.  Of course, Corbin came to the Jazz when they shipped Big T to Minnesota.  After Utah though, he continued to play under great coaches,

After three years in Utah, Corbin wrapped up his career in Atlanta, Miami, Sacramento and finally, in 2000-01, Toronto. Corbin was a sought-after role player for coaching legends Pat Riley, Rick Adelman, and Lenny Wilkens, for whom he played three separate times.

He's learned from some of the best.   He was in Minnesota because of the expansion draft.  So while the Jazz aren't an expansion-type team, he has experience improving and building with a team.

  Fanhouse takes a humorous look at what's next for Coach Sloan.  This one is my favorite,

Are you depressed? Do you lack self-esteem? Would you like to be yelled at for hours on end about how you are an embarrassment to your family? Then get ready for a Coach Sloan seminar, where Jerry will tell each participant exactly how they're lacking in startling detail. Most motivational speakers empower their charges, but Sloan would succeed by doing the opposite because the man is a firm believer that you can only build someone up after you've turned them into a sniveling pile of anthropomorphic tears. Hey, if it worked for Greg Ostertag, then it can work for regular folks like you and me.

In addition, I think he needs to have a segment on a tech show called, "What the hell is this and why would I need it?"  Or, you could have him attempt to explain new technologies to a senior center.  I still think there's a huge untapped market for Fess in a reality show but Sloan would be right there too.

    Stan Van Gundy had one of the best quotes about Sloan's resignation,

What surprises me is, not that it got to the point where he didn't want to do it anymore, but that it took this long -- 23 years. My God, that's unfathomable. I hate seeing all the speculation from people who have no clue. How about the possibility that he just said `I'm tired. I'd tired of all this.' It's a tough lifestyle. Twenty three years is a long time.

The only thing that still baffles me is not that he stepped down (that was going to come at some point), but that it happened mid-season.  We're even quite a bit past mid-season.  He's always said, and reminded us when news of his re-signing came up, that he evaluates things after the season is over.  I just don't see how he doesn't finish the season out regardless.

The grind and wear and tear on the body doesn't wait for convenient times to manifest.  I guess it could have come at the beginning of the season as well but had the team not been struggling, I don't think we see Sloan step down.  He said that had they won against the Bulls, he might not have retired then, but it would have come.  So would we have seen him step down earlier this season had the Jazz started out 10-15 instead of 15-5?

We really won't know the entire story behind  what happened.  We're going to have to take the organization, Jerry, and the players' word.  Sloan has a reputation with the players, team, media, and others of telling it like it is.  I don't think there's any reason to doubt him now.

    The media now kind of looks foolish for having never given Jerry Sloan the coach of the year award.  Sloan's problem was that his teams have always had such high expectations that short of winning 72 games, he wasn't ever considered enough of an overachiever to get the votes.  He could make a case most years to get the award.  His teams from 1997-99 (including the lockout) were notable but the 2003-2004 season is when he should have won it.  After Stockton and Malone left, that Jazz team was supposed to be this year's Cavaliers (coincidentally Mo Williams appears on both teams).  They finished 2 games over .500 that season, just missing the playoffs.

Now, they've blown it.  Sloan isn't going to coach again.  Anything that they could or would do now would ring hollow.  It would have the same effect of coming home tonight after work at 7 and realizing that you've forgotten a Valentine's Day gift for your significant other.  You can rush to the store to grasp for whatever is left, but you're too late.  That chocolate rose from 7/11 isn't going to cut it.

So please, don't do anything to recognize Sloan now.   The best way to honor his legacy is to not recognize it like you've been doing for nearly the past quarter century.


  Monday open-ended poll...  How and when should the Jazz honor Coach Sloan?