Bits from John Stockton’s “Assisted” Media Blitz, Part 3
On whether he’s ever been approached by the Jazz to coach full-time
“Approached” isn’t necessarily–I, it, we’ve had a discussion or two. And we did before I retired. Larry [H. Miller] and I sat in our office and we talked about the prospects of one day becoming a coach, and you know, we, I guess agreed on the decision not to. And what–in whatever capacity that was. But no, I think that, you know, an actual offer and a denial, hasn’t happened yet.
On Phoenix Suns Head Coach Jeff Hornacek
I’ve had a chance to talk to Jeff a couple times, and I’m very happy for him. I knew that was something that he wanted to do. I think Phoenix is a perfect situation for him, and I just know that he’ll do a great job.
I’ve been in the locker room long enough with that man. I just know what his capabilities are. They’ve picked a good one down in Phoenix.
On whether there were any parts of his life that were interesting to relive while writing the book
What I found is if there was areas that I just didn’t want to go back to. You know, I think there’s a little bit of talking about the championship series, and it’s, those are a blast.
We came out, you know, obviously, on the losing end of that. I didn’t have much to add to that, you know, I, and that surprised me a little bit. I thought that that would be more of a story. But for me, it was, that was over, move forward, and that’s probably how I approached it at the time.
On the advice he gave Trey Burke and Alec Burks when they visited him this summer
I didn’t give them a lot of advice. I had a good time with both of them. They’re good, nice young men and they were both open ears, ready to learn and ready to hear whatever. Mostly what I did when they were there is babbled.
We talked about certain plays and what they might see and what I would’ve done if I saw this, and then just babbled. And hopefully if there’s some wisdom in my experiences, then hopefully they pick it up and it helps them.
But really it’s not like coaching normally where you have a whole year to work on, and you can, you know, work on this move or that play and solidify it in your memory for the rest of your life. It’s more conceptual, and I enjoyed my time with them. It was a lot of fun for me. So, it was my treat really. A treat for me, I should say.
The Jazz said they consulted with you before drafting Trey Burke, and you suggested he’d be a good pick. What do you see in him?
Actually, I wasn’t consulted on Trey before the draft or anything like that. They’ve asked since, and that was part of it. But that was all part of that working-out process.
On the foreword of his book
Obviously, if you’ve read the book, Karl [Malone], his foreword was tremendous. And my kids wanted to call the foreword, “The Power Foreword,” by the way. So, I thought that was kind of catchy.
On whether there will be a sequel and whether it’ll be a trilogy
I don’t think there will be a sequel or a tri–I mean, you guys are already kinda razzing me about telling everything. But there’s still more stuff rattling around in my head, but I don’t know if I’ll go this route again.
On how Frank Layden shaped his career
I don’t know if you can cover that. Every time I speak to Frank Layden, even today, wisdom just kind of oozes out everywhere. It was very important to him that he maked his players better people when they were done with them.
And I mean, that’s the type of care he had for his players. I remember many conversations I had with him before we’d even started bouncing the balls in training camp my rookie season that impacted the rest of my life.
And that’s just the type of man he is, and I think that helps you. It gives you confidence. It gives you, “he’s on my side” and you’re able to go out there and just compete instead of worry all the time.
On how Jerry Sloan impacted his career
You can’t put into words his impact on my li(fe) and career. Coach, friend, mentor, boss. I mean, he’s really worn a lot of hats for me personally, and I admire him so much I can’t even express it.
On Jerry limiting his minutes to extend his career
That was one of the things we fought about. I didn’t want to play forever. I wanted to go, I wanted to try to win this whole thing and then go off into the sunset, so to speak. And he felt like he had a duty to the organization to preserve us and have us around for a longer time.
Felt like that you, then you bring a mesh of young guys in, you’re viable for longer. And yeah, we argued about it, but he won. And you know, that, I would’ve probably gone a different route.
On what it was like to see his son, Michael, wearing a Jazz jersey in draft workouts and the summer league
It was very neat to see Michael wearing the Jazz gear and practicing, and even more so to see the pride in which he held doing it. You don’t know the impact this team has had on my children, and that was a great thrill for him, for me, for us. It was neat.
On the “undercurrent” on the team in his last season.
I think the whole purpose of that point in the story was not even the undercurrent. It was how I handled it, and how I handled a lot of things, maybe, in that last year. I mean, there’s signs.
I don’t know if any of you have retired or have come close or have thought about it, but the, for me it’s, “Why didn’t I do something? What didn’t I pay attention? Why didn’t, why wasn’t I looking? Why…”
All these things, indicator that maybe it might be time for me to look for a new profession, so to speak. And you know, I took that very internal on what I needed to do rather than what was going on there. But I couldn’t say that without expressing what led up to it.
I’m not going on Twitter. No. I don’t know anything about Twitter. It scares me, and I have no intention of being part of anything Twitter.
On his brand new cell phone
This is my brand-new phone, ’cause I dropped the other one in some water, that I had for 10 years. So I don’t even know how to use these functions.
While doing one of his interviews, Stock was interrupted by Matt Harpring.
Harpring: How come I can’t get a book? You can’t get me a book? We were teammates, we’re friends…
Stockton: What, was the bookstore closed? (KALL, 1280, KSL, Utah Jazz)