Let Mike Conley wear the damn headband.
There. I said it.
The Utah Jazz have let this no headband thing go on long enough. Mike Conley who is known for sporting a headband with his amazing hair deserves to have this. At Conley’s introductory press conference, it was Eric Walden who asked the VERY IMPORTANT question, “Has he asked Quin Snyder about wearing a headband?”
“I have not! I’m kind of afraid to do that — I was gonna wait a little while.”
And the REALLY important stuff — Conley has NOT asked Quin about wearing a headband yet: “I have not! I’m kind of afraid to do that — I was gonna wait a little while. And if I can’t, I’m good.” pic.twitter.com/WCRlpwx74h— Eric Walden (@tribjazz) July 8, 2019
For those younger Jazz fans thinking to themselves, why is Mike Conley possibly a little nervous to ask about wearing a headband? This goes back to the Frank Layden Utah Jazz days. Not wearing headbands in Utah is almost like the Yankees’ No Facial Hair rule. It’s just been synonymous with playing for the Utah Jazz for so long, it’s hard to pinpoint when it started and why it started.
Why don’t the Utah Jazz allow headbands?
The Jazz are well known for not allowing players to wear headbands since the head coach Frank Layden days. While many believe it’s because Sloan didn’t want them, it was more associated with Frank Layden.
“The no-headband, same-socks, tucked-in-jersey- rule commonly attributed to Jerry Sloan actually originated with Frank Layden. Jerry continued the tradition when he became head coach, telling players if they wanted to stand out, they could stand out with their play.”
- via moni from jazzfanatical
It wasn’t long ago that it was even a small controversy that Deron Williams wore a headband during All-Star weekend festivities when he was a member of the Utah Jazz. Ronnie Brewer, shortly after being traded from the Utah Jazz, began to wear a headband. Players that wore headbands before their time in Utah stopped wearing them.
When Ty Corbin took over as head coach, there was a possible chance of headbands being allowed. Ty Corbin slammed that door shut when he told Steve Luhm of the Salt Lake Tribune, “No headbands.”
When Quin Snyder took over, there were more pressing matters than a headband. The team had become mired in mediocrity and had the tall task of developing young players. Many of these players didn’t have a style on the court. Understated players like Derrick Favors and Gordon Hayward didn’t like to stand out on or off the court.
That topic has never had to be broached until now. The good news is the aura of the No Headbands rule might be overstated. The rule was less about upstaging other team members and just looking uniform on the court.
The popular belief is that Jerry Sloan had an outright ban on headbands because he wanted the emphasis on ‘team’ rather than ‘individual.’ According to Ronnie Brewer during a radio interview some years ago, however, Jerry’s policy was actually ‘everyone or no one.’
Mike Conley may not have to do much convincing to have a headband while playing for the Utah Jazz in 2019. All uniformity on the court went out the window when the NBA allowed NBA players to go hog wild with socks and shoes last year. The NBA had an unprecedented amount of diversity when it came to styles on the court. The Utah Jazz currently have a player who has his own signature shoe with a wide variety of non-Jazz colored colorways. The time for ‘everyone or no one’ left the station long ago.
That’s good news for Conley. Aaron Falk of UtahJazz.com even said Mike Conley shouldn’t have to worry about losing his headband privileges in Utah.
My bet is Conley will be just fine to wear one. The headband rule was a Coach Sloan policy. (And it wasn't necessarily anti-headband so much as a matter of uniformity; either everyone wore one or no one did.) Could be wrong, but I don't think I've heard Snyder ever mention it.— Aaron Falk (@aaronfalk) July 8, 2019
Just let Mike wear the headband. Let us have this.