Dave Checketts: Jerry Sloan thought about Pistons coaching job for “a couple of days”
Dave Checketts, who hired Jerry Sloan back in the day, was interviewed on KALL today and had this update on Jerry:
I’ll tell you this about Jerry and I don’t think this has been published anywhere…he’s one of the people that was asked whether he’d consider sitting down with the new owner of the Pistons and bless his heart, he thought about it for a couple of days and came back and said he wasn’t ready to go back to work. I do believe he will.
According to Checketts, Jerry “looks like he’s ready [to get back to coaching], and it won’t be long. I believe he’ll be back on a sideline some place. Good for him. He looks like he’s gotten some rest, some sunshine, and he looks great.”
Asked what made/makes Jerry such a great coach, Checketts responded:
He’s a guy who just has a really good combination of steel and velvet. He loves his players. He’s a very good communicator with them. He’s very honest and open and frank about his assessment of you as a player. But at the same time, he has this ability to intimidate, to push, and to get the best out of guys. …
He’s not afraid to put players on the bench, to take away time, to change their assignment, their rotation, to do whatever he had to to get them going. And sometimes you have coaches that just spend all their time trying to get on the good side of the players and have them play for him that way. Jerry didn’t have time for any of that. He wanted your best, demanded your best as a coach and knew how to get it.
He and Phil together are a terrific combination because Phil is an offensive genius. Tex Winter got all of this publicity, all of this recognition sitting alongside Phil Jackson for the triangle offense. Well, Phil [Johnson] was never as predictable as the triangle offense. Obviously, pick and roll is a big part of his game with the players that they had over time, but Phil was a great offensive coach, great offensive mind, and Jerry of course is not only one of the great defenders of all time, but one of the great defensive coaches. So between the two of them, that’s what made them such a great, great pair for many, many years.