04 February 2012
Much has been swirling around the Utah Jazz organization the last 48 hours. A lot of “he said, she said” finger pointing. A war of words surrounding the exit of Hall of Fame Coach Jerry Sloan almost a year ago.
Like many Jazz fans, I’m still trying to piece it all together.
To quote the words of a classic movie “A Few Good Men”:
Many of “us” out there feel we are “entitled” to the truth. We “deserve” the answers to everything that goes on in the Utah Jazz organization. We feel that because we put our emotions, time, effort and, yes even, our money into rooting for our favorite NBA team we are entitled to answers.
While we may earn the right to know what’s going on with the team, we most certainly are not entitled to everything that goes on behind closed doors. I’m not sure we could handle it or the repercussions that could come as a result either.
We can sit here and debate whether or not Sloan left of his own free will and choice. Or whether Deron forced the Jazz’ hand on the situation.
But let’s focus, instead, on the legacy that is Larry Miller, and the future of the Jazz as it is now constituted.
Larry H. Miller (Photo via KSL)
Larry was the consummate owner. He loved the organization. He was passionate about it. There’s no doubt about it. The Utah Jazz, was his family. And he, along with his management team, provided a safe, sound, and welcoming environment for his employees, including and especially, coaches and players. That’s what you do for family.
That legacy has now been passed on to his son.
Greg is just as passionate as his father was. He also provides that same environment, along with his current management team, that Larry did. An environment based on loyalty and respect. And he will defend it to the end. Greg has proven worthy to continue the legacy left by his father. He makes decisions based on the best interest of the organization...and yes, the community as well. And he would go to bat to defend the organization over and over again.
Furthermore, let’s not allow the events of the last two days tarnish the legacy of two of the greatest coaches the NBA has produced. Jerry's legacy as a coach will be remebered with the likes of Red Auerbach, Phil Jackson, and many others. His legacy is cemented as one of the greatest coaching minds the NBA has ever known. And his assistant Phil Johnson, his right hand man, is equally great. Both were passionate about the game. And most importantly, both, wanted to win.
That legacy, just like Larry’s, has been passed on, to Ty Corbin.
The Utah Jazz has entered a new era. The torch has been passed on. And there’s nothing wrong with that. Time passes, and people move on. It is now Ty and Greg’s turn to continue the tradition. Remember the good times, and embrace the new era, rather than focus on the details and events that brought the present to fruition.
Rather than go down the dark path of “entitlement”, focus instead on the future of a young, talented, and exciting Jazz team. Embrace the new era.
As a modern cliche states “the name on the front of the jersey is more important than the name on the back” or the coach who is on the sideline.
Embrace and appreciate it or...you may lose it!
So as the stories continue to unfold. As we continue to hear the back and forth rhetoric regarding the sad exit of one Jerry Sloan, remember...you want the truth, you may have to deal with it, and all the repercussions that come with it. Some things are better left as they are. Better left behind closed doors where they were intended to stay.
Remember, as the 2011-2012 slogan states: #WeAreUtahJazz