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New coach Quin Snyder preaches player development in Utah

Jun 9, 2014, 8:34 PM EDT

Quin Snyder AP

This is why Utah Jazz fans should be happy landing Quin Snyder as your new head coach:

Player development.

The Jazz have some pieces you can start to build around — Trey Burke, Derrick Favors, Gordon Hayward, Enes Kanter, plus whoever they land with the No. 5 pick in this draft — but you need a coach who can develop them, help them grow into a team. (They also need one superstar player to lead that group, but that’s a different challenge.)

Quin Snyder and Jazz GM Dennis Lindsey have player development in their background together — Lindsey was in the Spurs front office while Snyder coached their affiliated D-League team the Austin Toros. Out of that grew what could work in Utah, something they talked about at their introductory press conference, as reported by the Associated Press.

“We decided with Austin that we would focus of development rather than winning, but what happened is that we developed players and helped the highest number of players matriculate to the NBA during that stretch. We also won a lot of games at the same time,” Lindsey said.

There were some fans who saw the Snyder hire and thought “that guy from Missouri” but he has had an interesting career development arc since then.

“There was a point in my career when I left Missouri when I just wasn’t sure I wanted to continue coaching,” Snyder said. “I had to rediscover my passion for the game over the next few years and I was so fortunate to work with an amazing caliber of coaches…

“I’ve had a chance to work with some of the best minds in basketball,” Snyder said. “It’s humbling to think how I’ve been able to be around those people like Coach K, Coach Pop, R.C. Buford. Through those opportunities, you know what you don’t know. But I’d like to think I took advantage of it.”

He ended up in Atlanta last season with Mike Budenholzer, Popovich’s former lead assistant. He also worked with Doug Collins a couple years ago.

He’s getting a shot in Utah, where there should not be expectations of the playoffs next season (not in the West, anyway). It’s a process. It’s about developing something that can win long term.

“Trust is something that’s earned,” said Snyder…. “It takes time but with players, they always respond when you give yourself to them and help them get better. They then give back to you. Those relationships are what drive player development.”

  1. muathjam21 - Jun 9, 2014 at 9:13 PM

    I’m more interested in the shampoo he uses.

  2. campcouch - Jun 9, 2014 at 9:24 PM

    Purple,yellow and green just doesn’t work.

    • balfe13 - Jun 9, 2014 at 10:08 PM

      Uhhhh…? Well, thanks, Fashion Guy. But just so you know, this is “Pro Basketball Talk,” not “Project Runway Talk.”

      • spursareold - Jun 10, 2014 at 7:58 AM

        Tell it to Russell Westbrook.

  3. eugenesaxe1 - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:13 PM

    “Player development”=”We’re going to suck for a few more years”

  4. csbanter - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:24 PM

    The Jazz are going to make a quantum leap next year. Memphis could be that team which slides backward. Utah have Youth on its side.

  5. realfootballfan - Jun 10, 2014 at 1:23 AM

    Hope this guy’s learned something since he lost the Missouri job, but otherwise I don’t get how some of these people get jobs. If you failed at college coaching, I wouldn’t be too optimistic about you in the pros.

    • spursareold - Jun 10, 2014 at 8:00 AM

      He didn’t fail at coaching, he failed at following recruiting rules that don’t exist in the NBA.

    • asimonetti88 - Jun 10, 2014 at 11:37 AM

      He had a .571 winning record at Missouri, and took them farther in the tournament than any other Mizzou team in history. Keyon Dooling and Kareem Rush both played in the NBA after playing for him…

  6. nsstlfan - Jun 10, 2014 at 10:38 AM

    Oh and he failed at keeping hard drugs out of his system too while he was at MU

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