Legendary Utah Jazz head coach and former Chicago Bulls player, Jerry Sloan, has died Friday at the age of 78..
The Jazz announced the passing of Sloan due to complications of Parkinson’s disease and Lewy body dementia. Sloan was diagnosed with dementia in April 2016.
The Jazz have released a statement:
“Jerry Sloan will always be synonymous with the Utah Jazz. He will forever be a part of the Utah Jazz organization and we join his family, friends and fans in mourning his loss. We are so thankful for what he accomplished here in Utah and the decades of dedication, loyalty and tenacity he brought to our franchise.
“Our Hall of Fame coach for 23 years, Jerry had a tremendous impact on the Jazz franchise as expressed by his banner hanging in the arena rafters. His 1,223 Jazz coaching wins, 20 trips to the NBA Playoffs and two NBA Finals appearances are remarkable achievements. His hard-nosed approach only made him more beloved. Even after his retirement, his presence at Jazz games always brought a roaring response from the crowd.
“Like Stockton and Malone as players, Jerry Sloan epitomized the organization. He will be greatly missed. We extend our heartfelt condolences to his wife, Tammy, the entire Sloan family and all who knew and loved him.”
Sloan was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2009. He coached the Jazz from 1988 to 2011 and has the third-most wins in NBA history, with a record of 1,221-803. During his tenure he led the Jazz to two NBA Finals, 20 NBA playoff runs, seven division titles, and won 50 games in 10 different seasons.
As a player, Sloan was a two-time NBA All-star in the late 1960s and played 11 NBA seasons with Chicago and Baltimore. Sloan was the first player in the history of the Bulls to have his jersey retired. He also coached the Bulls from 1979-82.