Saying "it's time to move on," Jerry Sloan officially announced his resignation as Utah Jazz head coach after 23 years in an emotional press conference in Salt Lake City. The longtime head coach said he was thinking about resigning after last night's Jazz loss to the Bulls, slept on it and ultimately made up his mind this morning.
"When it's all said it done, it's just a matter of me deciding it's time to leave, not to make a big deal out of it. I try not to make a big deal out of most things anyway," Sloan said.
Sloan, who resigned along with longtime assistant coach Phil Johnson, remained understated throughout the press conference, cracking jokes to relieve the obvious pain on his face. He denied reports that he was pushed outbecause of a halftime dispute with Deron Williams, his star player.
"I've had confrontations with players since I've been in the league," he said. "But those things are minor as far as going forward. It is what it is."
"I've never had a team that's done everything I wished out on the court, that's with good teams and bad teams," he said later."I don't think teams ever bat 100 percent about what you want them to do on the court."
Greg Miller, the owner of the team, echoed those sentiments.
"Nobody pushed Jerry or Phil out," Miller said. "No players pushed him out. [General Manager] Kevin O'Conner didn't push him out, I didn't push him out and no coaches pushed him out."
Miller said that Sloan came to him in the morning before shootaround to inform him of his decision. This was one night after Sloan kept the media waiting for over 30 minutes while he had a conversation with O'Connor in his office.
In Sloan's place, the Jazz announced that current assistant Tyrone Corbin will become the team's next head coach. Corbin said he could not bring himself to celebrate his promotion.
"I look forward to the opportunity,"Corbin said. "But right now, I don't think this should be about me."
Sloan said he will not take another coaching job, joking that the only job he would take was with his wife at home. When asked whether he thought this day would come, he joked that "I entered every day thinking this would be my last day. I know that's kind of corny, but I'm a corny guy."