Wednesday, December 10, 2008

A strong belief in fundamentals

The SLC paper had a good interview recently with Frank Layden, the former Jazz coach whom Jerry Sloan replaced after Coach Layden retired and moved into the front office.

-- On the high level of turnover among NBA coaches: "The way the contracts are structured nowadays, you can't fire the players, so you fire the coach and you hope for the best. Usually, the results don't change very much - - occasionally, they do - - but not very often is the coach really at fault."

-- On Jerry Sloan: "In my mind, Jerry is the best coach, maybe in any sport, not just the basketball. I think he sometimes, because of the market we're in, he doesn't get the credit. He'd already be in the Hall of Fame if he was coaching New York or Chicago or Los Angeles."

-- On Utah's commitment to teaching and the basics: "We believe in fundamentals. We teach fundamentals. We do a lot of teaching. If you look at practice, you'll see the assistant coaches play an active role - - that's not true with a lot of teams, in any sport - - the head coach a lot of times is dominant."

-- On how the Jazz have remained consistent winners: "A lot of times people say, 'Well, how do the Jazz do it?' and I say, 'They're conservative, they're very loyal and they have a plan and they stick to it and they don't vary from it.' They don't panic, which a lot of teams do."

-- On the "best coaches he'd ever seen": John Wooden, Morgan Wooten, Dean Smith and Jerry Sloan.