The Phoenix Suns took a step away from mediocrity and toward competence by hiring Utah Jazz assistant coach Igor Kokoskov. Kokoskov has been a staple of Quin Snyder’s coaching staffs in the past and now there’ll be a vacancy for Snyder’s right hand man. If we’re being honest with ourselves, Kokoskov put himself on the coaching map this past summer when he led the Slovenian team to a Eurobasket title. He bested a team featuring the Gasol brothers and Ricky Rubio.
Kokoskov is signing a three-year deal with the Suns, league sources tell ESPN. https://t.co/AvS6ILICtV— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) May 2, 2018
You might also recognize a player who was on that roster: Luka Doncic. The Phoenix Suns currently hold the highest odds in this draft. If this isn’t signaling that they’ll draft Luka at all costs, I don’t know what is. This would reunite Doncic with Kokoskov providing the young Slovenian phenom with some familiarity and good teaching.
For Phoenix fans, you’re getting a hell of a coach in Igor Kokoskov. He has seen how the Utah Jazz have built their culture. If there’s anyone who can implement the Snyder way in Phoenix it is Kokoskov. Don’t dismiss a possible Slovenian team connection, too. The Suns better get ready for 3 hour practices. Their veterans better be ready for higher accountability. No more trotting back on defense Tyson Chandler.
Kokoskov did a great job of putting Doncic in positions to succeed @ Eurobasket. Got the defense moving side to side before bringing Doncic off a ball screen going right w' a spaced floor. He's at his best when he can catch on the move & pick teams apart. https://t.co/FjeHn0rPwU pic.twitter.com/wotl0H5uoN— Mike Schmitz (@Mike_Schmitz) May 2, 2018
For Jazz fans, this is going to hurt a bit. That’s the problem with having a very good head coach and supporting staff. People around the league have taken note of the Jazz’s good culture, accountability, and performance. Utah’s turnaround this season has put them on everybody’s radar. This is just the start of Quin Snyder’s coaching tree. We should also see how this affects the Utah Jazz’s free agents this summer. Derrick Favors and Dante Exum are both due to become free agents this summer. What does Phoenix lack? A good defensive big man and a quality point guard.
Congratulations to Igor Kokoskov and the Phoenix fanbase. You got a good one.