Utah Jazz staying busy during lockout

Published: Saturday, Oct. 8 2011 10:00 p.m. MDT

Knowing that and being cognizant of the possibility that a cram session could be in store for camp, Corbin has his coaching staff — featuring Scott Layden, Jeff Hornacek and new addition Sidney Lowe — working, meeting, watching video and bouncing ideas off of each other even while players are elsewhere for who knows how long.

"You know the importance of being ready coming out of camp and trying to get off to a good start," Corbin said after talking about the shortened '99 season. "The short time that you have in training camp, (it's important) we get everybody on the same page. … We want to make sure that we're organized and together so the guys can get organized and together as soon as we can."

Corbin believes the experience he has on the bench will help the Jazz deal with a possibly skimmed schedule. Layden has been with the Jazz for 25 years, Hornacek has four years of part-time coaching experience along with his successful playing career and Lowe is a two-time NBA head coach who has 18 seasons of coaching under his belt.

"They will be a really, really good asset for us," Corbin said Thursday at a press conference to introduce his former Minnesota teammate, Lowe, as the Jazz's new assistant.

The more time for a training camp, the better as far as Corbin is concerned. He wants players to feel comfortable with each other and the system, so they don't have to think — and can just play instinctively — once they're on the floor.

Corbin said it's possible the Jazz might add another coach to the staff, although he didn't give details as to whether he'd be full-time or have an emphasis on a specific position.

Corbin also said he isn't going to give his assistants specific assignments to begin with, meaning Lowe, a former NBA point guard, will be working with Devin Harris as well as new center Enes Kanter, etc. Same for Layden and Hornacek, who's been Utah's part-time shooting coach since 2007.

"Everybody's coaching. Nobody's a defensive specialist — nobody's an offensive (specialist)," Corbin said. "We're all coaching everything on the floor, and we have all the responsibilities.

"Right now, we all have to coach. We have to coach both sides of the floor," said Corbin, who was Sloan's assistant for seven years prior to becoming his successor. "We have to coach big guys and small guys at times. But we have to get these guys better … wherever that is."

For now they're bonding and building a foundation together. They've even spent time doing "fantasy training camps," running sponsors and elite season-ticket holders through drills similar to what Jazz players go through on a daily non-lockout basis.

One hard part for Jazz coaches and management, though, is not being able to contact or work with their players. That's a costly no-no.

"I wouldn't call it frustrating," O'Connor said. "I'd call it paranoia."

And it raises many questions, especially O'Connor admitted to wondering, "Wow. What are they doing?"

Added O'Connor: "It's just what you deal with and it's part of what we're going through. The only thing that we can do is do what we're capable of and that's prepare ourselves to be ready to roll the balls out and get started when it happens."

Email: jody@desnews.com

Twitter: DJJazzyJody

Try out the new DeseretNews.com design!
try beta learn more
Get The Deseret News Everywhere