NBA Betting: Who Will Be Next Head Coach of Utah Jazz?
by Bovada Sportsbook Staff | April 28, 2014
Being an NBA coach is a bit like the job in college these days: you have to be able to "recruit" guys to come play for you. That’s what makes the Utah job one of the harder ones in the NBA. It’s not ever going to be easy luring top free agents to play for the Utah Jazz versus a major cosmopolitan city – think lifestyle, marketing opportunities, etc.
The cupboard is far from bare in Utah, though. The Jazz have some good young players in guards Trey Burke, Gordon Hayward and Alec Burks as well as big men Derrick Favors and Enes Kanter. The team has a ton of cap space to spend this offseason and a draft pick in the lottery that has a 11.9 chance of becoming the No. 1 overall pick. The Jazz are praying they get a chance to take Duke’s Jabari Parker because he is a Mormon and obviously that would be a big drawing card in Utah.
However, the Utah Jazz head coach position is open after the team finished 25-57 this season and missed the playoffs for the second straight year under head coach Tyrone Corbin. He had a 112-146 (.434) record with the Jazz in four seasons after replacing Jerry Sloan.
Bovada has odds on who’ll be the next Jazz coach. Here are the options.
Jim Boylen (+200): He is an assistant in San Antonio under Gregg Popovich and being part of Pop’s coaching tree is always alluring to NBA general managers. Especially Utah GM Dennis Lindsey, who came from
the Spurs. Boylen had brief interim head coaching stints with the Bucks and Bulls. He coached the University of Utah from 2007-11. He was fired after two straight losing seasons.
Ettore Messina (+400): This in many ways would be a revolutionary hire should the Jazz choose to go this route. Messina is a legendary coach in Europe, winning championships in Italy, where he’s from, Spain and Russia (he’s currently at CSKA Moscow). There has never been a foreign-born NBA head coach.
Mike Longabardi (+550); Longabardi is currently an assistant coach in Phoenix and used to work in Houston when the Spurs’ Lindsey was there. Longabardi is considered a "defensive guru" along the lines of successful Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau.
Andy Greer (+550): Greer also worked with Lindsey in Houston and has been an assistant for four different franchises: New York, Houston, Memphis and Chicago. He has been with the Bulls under Thibodeau for the past four seasons.
Brad Jones (+550): Jones replaced current Suns head coach Jeff Hornacek as a full-time assistant with the Jazz this season. Jones previously was the team’s director of player development. He has head coaching experience in the D-League and is Sloan’s nephew.
Jeff Van Gundy (+550): This is the biggest name on this list. He coached the Knicks for five years and Houston for four when Lindsey was there. Van Gundy has been linked to several other NBA jobs but always has stayed in television. He has expressed an interest in returning to coaching at some point.
Lionel Hollins (+600): Hollins had a successful run with the Memphis Grizzlies before the team decided not to bring him back this season. He has ties to the state of Utah as he spent two years at Dixie College.
Stan Van Gundy (+750): Jeff’s brother seems more likely to leave television than Jeff does. Stan Van Gundy was 371-208 with the Orlando Magic, winning the Eastern Conference title in 2009.