July 9, 2021

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Jerry Sloan, Hall of Fame coach of Utah Jazz, dies at 78

Jerry Sloan, the Corridor of Fame coach who was a fixture for many years in Utah and took the Jazz to the NBA Finals in 1997 and 1998, died Friday. He was 78.

The Jazz mentioned he died from issues of Parkinson’s illness and Lewy physique dementia. Sloan had been in failing well being for a few years.

Sloan spent 23 seasons teaching the Jazz. The group — with John Stockton and Karl Malone main the way in which in a lot of these seasons — completed under .500 in solely a kind of years. Sloan gained 1,221 video games in his profession, the fourth-highest complete in NBA historical past. Solely Lenny Wilkens, Don Nelson and Gregg Popovich have extra victories.

“It was an honour and a privilege to have one of the greatest and most respected coaches in NBA history coaching our team,” the Miller household, who personal the Jazz, mentioned in a press release. “We’ve appreciated our relationship with Jerry and acknowledge his dedication to and keenness for the Utah Jazz.

“He has left an everlasting legacy with this franchise and our household. The far-reaching affect of his life has touched our metropolis, state and the world in addition to numerous gamers, employees and followers.”

Utah went to the finals twice below Sloan, each occasions falling to Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls.

Sloan entered the Corridor of Fame in 2009.

“I am not into numbers and stuff like that,” Sloan said when he passed Pat Riley for No. 3 on the NBA’s all-time win list in 2010; Popovich has since surpassed him for that spot. “I by no means have been. I’ve acquired an ideal group to work for that is given me a possibility to remain there for a very long time. I am very grateful for that and the coaches that I’ve with me. It isn’t about me.”

‘The Unique Bull’

He spent 34 years within the Jazz group, as head coach, assistant, scout or senior basketball adviser. Sloan began as a scout, was promoted as an assistant below Frank Layden in 1984 and have become the sixth coach in franchise historical past on Dec. 9, 1988, after Layden resigned.

“Like Stockton and Malone as gamers, Jerry Sloan epitomized the group,” the Jazz said in a statement. “He shall be drastically missed.”

Sloan’s longevity with the Jazz was outstanding. Throughout his time in Utah, there have been 245 teaching adjustments across the league and 5 groups — Charlotte, Memphis, Toronto, Orlando and Minnesota — didn’t even exist when he took the helm with the Jazz.

He additionally was the coach in Chicago for components of three seasons, going 94-121. However his ties with the Bulls had been a lot deeper. His No. four jersey was retired by the group after a enjoying profession by which he averaged 14.zero factors, 7.5 rebounds and a pair of.5 assists in 755 video games over 11 NBA seasons.

They even referred to as him “The Unique Bull” as a result of he was chosen within the 1966 enlargement draft and have become a two-time All-Star identified for his toughness and grit. He stays the one NBA participant to common greater than seven rebounds and greater than two steals a sport in his profession.

“Jerry was the face of the Bulls group from its inception via the mid-1970s, and really appropriately, his uniform No. four was the primary jersey retired by the group,” Bulls chairman Jerry Reinsdorf said Friday. “An excellent participant and a Corridor of Fame NBA coach, most significantly, Jerry was an ideal particular person.”

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