I hear you fellow Jazz fans. I understand your frustration. I allowed it to boil over last season as well and place all Jazz problems on the shoulders of Tyrone Corbin. He’s the head coach, he’s the one (in theory) in charge of managing personnel on the court. I wanted the young guys to play more too. I saw the direction the team was heading and I wanted the youth movement to begin. He gets the lion’s share of the blame when the team is performing poorly. It comes with the territory and he gets it. Is it fair though? At the time I thought it was, now I’m not so sure.
“Tomorrow is just around the corner for Utah, since the main franchise cornerstones all have 2-3 years NBA experience. For players like Favors and Hayward, rookie contract extensions are due, and if the team is going to invest long-term dollars in the talent, it stands to reason that there is an expectation for return on investment, and Corbin will be held responsible. Corbin is entering lame-duck status on the last year of his deal, and the Jazz will have to show considerable improvement to justify retaining him.”
Conversations both recent and during the offseason with Dan Clayton, David Locke, Bill Oram and other Jazz insiders have me looking on the other side of the coin. The reality is Tyrone Corbin was put in a very tough spot last year. Management made a decision that it was playoffs or bust. This forces a coach to go with his veteran players, flaws and all, to give him the best chance to win night in and night out. We all know that the young guys are more talented than these vets, but the vets had been through the battles before and when a Coach is put in that situation, he’ll go for the sure thing whether we think it is right or wrong.
Coach Corbin is a young coach on the rise. He replaced a Hall of Famer. He doesn’t have the same clout with the organization that Coach Sloan had built up over years of success. Granted Jerry Sloan was given a much better situation to start off with 2 Hall of Fame players at his disposal but you still have to be a good coach to get the most out those players too. When looking at the situation Ty was put in to start his Head Coaching career, he’s actually done a wonderful job. This season for the first time, he will actually be able to run the offense he envisions because he has the athletes that can run it and are young enough that they are still teachable. The past 2 1/2 seasons Corbin had to cater to old dogs that could no longer learn new tricks. His fingerprints will be all over the team this year and he has management’s support. Don’t let the fact that his contract ends at the beginning of the season fool you. I think both parties want to make a fair assessment of his coaching abilities and sign him to a number of years and dollar amount that matches. It’s a win-win for both sides.
I hated seeing Jeff Hornacek leave. I’m a big Jeff Hornacek fan. He’s got his work cut out for him in Phoenix and I hope their management gives him the same support the Jazz give to Corbin. Had Hornacek truly bee the Jazz’s guy, they would have done everything to keep him. Corbin has done everything the organization has asked of him and he deserves the time to prove himself. I’m excited to watch he and the young guys grow together and see what they can do. If they still haven’t made the push we think they should in 3 years, then we can revisit this conversation. For now I think Coach Corbin deserves our support as he finally has free reign on the team. Don’t worry about what you’re reading in the newspaper, the young guys are going to start especially with Brandon Rush most likely not ready for the beginning of the season. Dennis Lindsey has introduced a lot of change into this organization (I’m almost positive he wanted to start the youth movement at the trade deadline) and the team will be better for it. Let’s give Coach Corbin the benefit of the doubt the next few seasons. He deserves the opportunity to coach this team, just like the young guys deserve the opportunity to play.