Report: Former Jazz Coach Jerry Sloan 'Is Dying' from Dementia, Parkinson's

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistJuly 17, 2019

Former Utah Jazz head coach Jerry Sloan, speaks at a news conference before a 20-year reunion ceremony for Utah Jazz team that reached the 1997 NBA Finals, before the start of their NBA basketball game against the New York Knicks Wednesday, March 22, 2017, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)
Rick Bowmer/Associated Press

Former Utah Jazz coach Jerry Sloan's health is reportedly in decline because of Parkinson's Disease and dementia.

"He is dying," someone close to the Sloan family told Gordon Monson of the Salt Lake Tribune.

Sloan, 77, was diagnosed with the two conditions in April 2016. Monson reported the Hall of Famer is no longer well enough to attend Jazz games.

Sloan was Jazz head coach from 1988-2011, becoming the winningest coach in franchise history while leading the team to two NBA Finals berths. Utah made the playoffs in each of Sloan's first 15 seasons. Only Don Nelson, Lenny Wilkins and Gregg Popovich have more wins among NBA coaches.

"The younger guys might not know who Jerry Sloan is but maybe they know who Karl Malone is and that's what he meant. He made me who I am," Karl Malone told Eric Woodyard of the Deseret News. "Enough said. You might not know who Jerry Sloan is but if you look at Karl Malone, that's who Jerry Sloan is. He made me the person I am and the player I am."

Monson described Sloan as "frail" and "physically and mentally limited," though he is occasionally able to converse with friends when he's having a good day. He requires 24-hour care.

In addition to his time with the Jazz, with whom he was an assistant for four years prior to taking the head coaching role, Sloan spent three years as the head coach of the Chicago Bulls and played more than a decade in the NBA with the Baltimore Bullets and Bulls.  

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