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#pounditThursday, June 20, 2024

Jazz reuniting with franchise great

Will Hardy on the sideline

Jul 15, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; San Antonio Spurs Summer League head coach Will Hardy is pictured during an NBA Summer League playoff game against the Portland Trailblazers at Thomas & Mack Center. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

The Utah Jazz just ended the Donovan Mitchell-Rudy Gobert era, but now they are bringing back an earlier era of franchise glory (sort of).

The Jazz announced Thursday that they are reuniting with Jeff Hornacek, who will serve as a coaching consultant to new head coach Will Hardy. Utah also revealed that Alex Jensen, Lamar Skeeter, and Bryan Bailey have been added to Hardy’s assistant coaching staff.

Hornacek played on the Jazz for seven seasons from 1994 to 2000. Known as a knockdown shooter and scorer, Hornacek helped lead Utah to back-to-back NBA Finals berths in 1997 and 1998. After the end of Hornacek’s NBA career, the Jazz retired his No. 14 jersey, making him just one of seven Utah players ever to have his number retired by the organization. Hornacek later served as an assistant coach for the Jazz from 2011 to 2013.

The younger generation knows Hornacek for his head coaching stints with the Phoenix Suns (from 2013 to 2016) and the New York Knicks (from 2016 to 2018). Though neither period was especially successful (particularly his time on the Knicks), Hornacek now returns to his beloved former team to provide support to a young, first-year head coach in Hardy.

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