After last week’s drama involving rumors that Deron Williams forced Jerry Sloan out the job he held for 23 years with the Utah Jazz, sports critics are wondering if this was all part of Williams master plan to bite the hands that feed him. Bruce Jenkins of the San Francisco Chronicle suggests that Williams has not only beefed with Sloan, but has longed to be in brighter city lights than the sole glow of the Mormon temple that sits downtown. Jenkins’ suggestion that Williams could fit with the Warriors, while fun to imagine, is a pipe dream:
That’s where the Warriors enter the picture. Williams can exercise a player option to become a free agent in the summer of 2012. If he becomes the bad guy in Utah, or reveals even a trace of personal unrest, the Jazz might feel compelled to trade him before he leaves the team outright. They’d be very interested in Stephen Curry, a classy kid and potential All-Star who would be readily accepted in that environment, and the combination of Monta Ellis alongside the rugged, 6-foot-3 Williams would give the Warriors one of the most effective backcourts in the league.
The likelihood of Williams wanting to relocate to the bay area (or sign an extension at that) will be challenging given that all NBA superstars want to create their own version of Voltron, the current trend in the NBA. As Tim Kawakami points out astutely:
Yes, they could always trade for Williams or Howard or whoever. But those players are going to want to have great/good teammates… and if the Warriors have to give up Curry to do it, why would a great player want to come join Lee, Ellis and Biedrins?
With that said, the Warriors should go for Jerry Sloan, even though his psyche may be damaged by potential power struggles between coaches and players. Superstar egos seem to be much more documented in the current day and age (see LeBron James) and coaches tend to be the first to go than players. But this is precisely why the Warriors might work out for Jerry Sloan. The Warriors team has no egos, or rather no one should have an ego. And from recent games, the Warrior seems more excited to get an easy bucket or a rebound than trying to one-up each other in the box score.
So, could the biggest off-season pick up actually be a coach (see San Francisco 49ers and Jim Harbaugh coup)?