Jerry Sloan’s emotional detail with George Karl

M. A. Barbero

Updated:05/23/2020 00: 43h

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Spanish basketball fans began to discover the nba in the 80s. It is true that before movies with the best plays were distributed, but as a result of the JJ.OO. of the Angels, where you could see live to Michael Jordan, Patrick Ewing and company, the lawsuit became unhealthy. Although videos and specialized bars were still in vogue, as soon as the games began to be televised and the finals were offered live (since 1988), everything that happened in that league began to be mythologized.

At that moment Jerry sloan he signed as a coach for the Utah Jazz and began to shape what would be his great life project. He had been everything as a player in the Chicago Bulls (He was a member of the founding staff in 1966 and twice “All Star”) and when he retired ten years later he had the honor of seeing his shirt hanging on the ceiling of the old Chicago Stadium. To complete the dream of someone who had been a serious and hard-working boy from Illinois, three courses later he debuted on the bench in the team of his dreams.

Unfortunately for him, things did not finish set, because it was a troubled time in which he could not end a positive balance and had to say goodbye to the franchise three campaigns later.

His great moment would come in 1988, when the good-natured Scott Layden He left the door open for him at the Jazz. And it was there, at the foot of the Salt Lake, where the hard-working farmer’s work ethic was merged with a directive that understood that these were the values ​​that were needed to leave anonymity. He sought quality and personality in his players and thus formed a block in which the stars were John Stockton and Karl Malone, but very well accompanied by others like Mark Eaton, Jeff Hornacek, Tom Chambers or Antoine Carr. And with a slogan above all: the prevalence of the team over any individuality.

Thus, with a block that crushed its rivals like a pylon hammer, managed to lead the Jazz to two NBA finals. The bad thing for him was that he found himself in front of Michael Jordan’s Bulls and they gave him no option to get any of those rings. As a great competitor, he was greatly hurt by those defeats and was not even comforted by his alma mater. «In Chicago I already did what I had to do at the time; in fact my shirt will be there forever. What I wanted was to be champion with Utah, “he said angrily at the time.

Despite his serious and cutting style, he was loved and revered by the public, players and coaches. Not surprisingly, it was the fourth most victorious in history, with 1,223 wins and 16 straight visits to the playoffs. But, besides, he was friends with his friends, like when encouraged George Karl in his troubled Madridista stage. Piculín Ortiz arrived as a backup from Utah mid-season and brought the coach a cap signed by Sloan. George wept with the gift.

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