If there is one holding Larry H. Miller can't stand to stay away from, it may be the Jazz.
So while eldest son Greg Miller was promoted Wednesday to chief executive officer of the Sandy-based Larry H. Miller Group of Companies, a broad umbrella of business and sports-related ventures that encompasses the NBA franchise, it remains to be seen just how much the ailing Jazz owner will stay involved in the team's day-to-day operations.
The likelihood seems a lot.
But no one's sure.
"I respect the fact that he's still the owner, and he can do whatever he wants," said Greg Miller, a 42-year-old father of six from Sandy who most recently has been overseeing development of, and operations at, the family-owned Miller Motorsports Park in Tooele County. "I wouldn't expect anything to change. He's a very hands-on guy, and I know that he enjoys his involvement with the Utah Jazz."
In fact, Miller added, "I don't know if he'll back off."
Yet 64-year-old Larry Miller has been hospitalized for five weeks with complications from type-2 diabetes, and even after Greg Miller held a hastily-called news conference Wednesday night it's unclear in the long-term just how much the Jazz's recuperating owner will desire and be able to handle.
"I would expect it to be more measured going forward, rather than just seat-of-the-pants, going-as-hard-as-you-can every day," said Greg Miller, adding he anticipates his father will become more involved in philanthropic efforts. "I would expect it to be more paced, and he'll decide when enough's enough.
"If he wants to continue the way he's done (with the Jazz), nobody's gonna stop him," Miller added. "And if he says, 'You know, I've had enough, I'm gonna go fishing,' then we'll deal with that too. We're prepared to handle any scenario."
As it stands, though, Greg Miller who also will serve with his three brothers, mother Gail and others on a newly formed governing board for the Miller companies, of which Larry Miller is chairman admittedly knows little about daily Jazz operations.
He suggested he has no knowledge of details regarding the team's most-pressing matter at the moment, ongoing negotiations of a contract extension for starting point guard Deron Williams.
He said Larry Miller will retain for now his seat on the NBA's Board of Governors the management body overseeing league operations but that potential succession to the seat will be discussed sometime in the future.
And he readily admits to being not nearly the basketball junkie Larry Miller is.
"I don't think it would be accurate to say that I'm as interested as Larry is," said Greg Miller, who regularly attends Jazz games but rarely seems as involved as his emotionally charged front-row father. "But the fact is I don't have as much at stake as Larry does. Some day I will.
"It's time for me to really earnestly start in that direction," he added. "I've got to become a student of the business and of the game, and get more involved now, whereas before that wasn't part of what my assignment was."
For now, then, don't expect Greg Miller to have his own stall in the Jazz lockerroom, like his old man.
Don't look for him slap hands, and tails, of players during pre-game introductions, like Dad does.
And certainly don't anticipate that he'll do any postgame berating after a particularly painful loss, as pops is prone to do on occasion.
"That's been my dad's style," Greg Miller said, "and ... my dad and I are different."
What Greg Miller does have is great faith in current Jazz management, particularly team president Randy Rigby and general manager Kevin O'Connor.
He called the company's Sports & Entertainment Group holdings which Rigby runs as president and chief operating officer, and which includes Triple-A baseball's Salt Lake Bees "well-oiled machines."
"I feel very strongly that the Jazz management team is as good as we could possibly ask for, with Randy Rigby and everybody that supports him in his role," Miller said. "And we have full confidence in their ability to manage that asset the way it ought to be managed.
"I would certainly plan on being there to support or help Randy and his people in any way possible. But I don't think any of (Wednesday's) announcements or changes will change the way business is conducted on the Jazz front."
Rigby and O'Connor suggested much the same Wednesday.
"Any time Greg or Larry have a question," O'Connor said, "we'll report to both."
"I will include Greg in terms of making him informed and keeping him in the mix as to what we're doing," Rigby added, "and I'm sure Larry will stay involved with player decisions."
Rigby indicated Larry Miller whom Greg Miller fully expects to see in his usual courtside seat for the Jazz's 2008-09 regular-season home opener, which will come in late October or early November actually has stayed involved with franchise business throughout much of his hospitalization.
That includes receiving regular updates on talks with the agent for Williams, who is eligible for a five-year extension worth about $90 million.
"Larry's been as involved in the past month as much as he's been previously," Rigby said. "Specifically with Deron, every bit as involved as he had conveyed to Kevin (O'Connor) and I that he wanted to be informed, which is kind of the same as he's been in the past. That's exactly how it's proceeded."
At least for now, then, Larry Miller remains the Jazz's last line of defense the person who signs off on all player transactions, the one who approves all major financial matters involving the franchise.
"I think for the time being that will be Larry," Greg Miller said. "I think as I grow into the position and as I learn more about some of those issues, then I'll take on more of that role."
Eventually, the ultimate decision involving the team that must be made will be that of ownership succession.
Asked Wednesday if he could say with certainty that the franchise will remain a Miller-owned entity, Greg Miller made it perfectly clearly where he stood."Absolutely, as long as I have anything to say about it," he said. "Absolutely."
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