Maybe time really does heal all.
And if it truly is, the Nets should actively pursue Sloan to replace former interim coach P.J. Carlesimo, who will not return after the team’s disappointing first-round postseason elimination by the Chicago Bulls.
Sloan was quickly mentioned as a potential replacement despite the fact that most believed it was a dispute between he and Williams back in 2011 that ultimately pushed him toward resignation about halfway through the season.
Not long before former Nets coach Avery Johnson was fired 28 games into this season did Williams complain about the ineffective methods in which he was being used offensively, as well as cite the successful ones that were run for him back in Utah under Sloan.
While that simply could’ve been viewed as growing frustration talking, Williams surprisingly made it clear this past week that he in fact does miss Sloan’s tutelage by stating “I’d love to play for Coach Sloan again.”
What came as an even bigger shock was when Sloan came out the following day and said he “would definitely listen if they [the Nets] called.”
Now that 11-time champion Phil Jackson has turned down the Nets open coaching gig, Sloan needs to become the Nets main target. The amount of success Sloan had with the Jazz, which included leading them to back-to-back Finals appearances in 1997 and 1998 as well as the quality run he had all those years with Williams running the point, would make the move a no-brainer for Brooklyn.
Clearly there isn’t any sort of animosity between the two, or else they wouldn’t have even thought about speaking the way they have recently.
Relationships may not work out the first time around, but a second shot is all it takes to do the trick sometimes.