UPDATE #2, 4:39 pm: It has been confirmed now by the Salt Lake Tribune and other sources that current Jazz assistant Ty Corbin will take over as the Jazz interim head coach.
UPDATE 2:38 pm: This is about as official as it will get until Sloan steps up to the podium, Jazz players are calling their agents saying Sloan is out, according to a tweet from Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Most expect Ty Corbin to get the job.
The press conference is scheduled for 3 p.m. in Utah (5 p.m. Eastern). It will be shown live on NBA.com.
1:44 pm: Long-time Utah Jazz coach Jerry Sloan will resign at a press conference in a couple hours, according to a tweet from the Deseret News.
Sloan is the longest tenured coach in the NBA, having taken over back in 1988. Sloan, 68, just announced days ago that he had signed a one-year extension with the team. Reports are assistant Phil Johnson also is stepping down.
We say stepping down, although we wonder how much he was pushed out the door. As much as an institution like Sloan could be forced to do anything in Utah.
Wednesday night Sloan, usually one of the fastest coaches to the post-game media interview, was more than 30 minutes late and appeared “shaken” when he arrived. When asked about it Sloan said he, General Manager Kevin O’Connor and the rest of the staff had a post-game meeting but would not go into details. He said the media would be informed Thursday of what was discussed.
The Jazz have struggled this season compared to previous seasons, they are 31-23 and the six seed in the West. But that has a lot more to do with Carlos Boozer and Kyle Korver and Wes Mathews leaving via free agency, being replaced by lesser talents like Al Jefferson (a poor fit for Sloan’s flex offense), than anything Sloan has done. Last season C.J. Miles could barely get on the floor, this season Sloan has to use him in key situations because there is no Jazz bench to speak of. Mehmet Okur has played in just 13 games. Sloan has been the same coach for decades, he gets the most out of what he is given, he has taken bad teams to the playoffs and good teams to the finals. He didn’t forget how to coach, he was just was given less to work with by O’Connor this season.
There have been 245 coaching changes around the NBA since Jerry Sloan took over his job.
As for potential successors, it is likely the Jazz would want to keep it in the family, so to speak. The most likely choice is Ty Corbin, although Jeff Hornacek could be in the mix.