Utah Jazz: Tyrone Corbin, Should he stay or should he go?

Tyrone Corbin may be the biggest argument of them all amongst Jazz nation. I have heard so many angles on this argument. So, I went and polled a few other bloggers about this very question. Below you will find what they think along with my own opinion. Please let us know what you think the Jazz should do about Tyrone Corbin.

[tabgroup] [tab title=Braeden Jensen, USN] Tyrone Corbin, stay or go.

I’ve been a semi-vocal voice in defending Ty Corbin this year. I think the guy gets a rough shake at things, especially recently when he’s getting booed during game intros during winning streaks. Come on fans, we’re better than that.

That being said, my vocal defense of Corbin has been a bit more quiet lately, especially as we’re getting into the nitty-gritty of this playoff race. It’s not that I don’t think that he’s the best guy to lead this team, and i definitely don’t think he should be fired right now, but that 3-12 stretch following the trade deadline had me scratching my head wondering if Corbin would be back next year. At that point, I started doubting whether he would be back if the Jazz didn’t make the playoffs, and I still do. That being said, if they can make the first round and steal a game or two, the pressure is on the front office to put together a team that has something besides free agency contracts to play for.

Generally, I’m against changing coaches in situations where the replacement wouldn’t make a significant change. I don’t think that this roster has enough on it to be a contender…yet. Nate McMillan would be a lower level playoff seed. Stan Van Gundy would too. The Jazz don’t want to go down the slippery slope that leads to firing “underachieving” coaches at the first sign of a struggle. That turns you into a franchise like Charlotte, Toronto, Washington, or Sacramento. That’s not the direction to go, and the front office has known that since they decided to not give Ty the “interim” tag since day 1. He’s the head coach, and he’s the guy here.

So, let’s give him another year. Next year’s roster might not look so hot either. Maybe they go all-in on the 2014 draft class, throwing next year out the window while barely reaching the salary floor. Maybe they put together a more coherent unit. I consider myself pretty patient as far as fans go, and don’t want Ty to get the boot just yet. This could take another 8 years to put together (as it did with two Hall of Fame players on the roster), and I’m willing to wait and see.

Find more from Braeden at Utah Sports Net and on Twitter @CanadianBraeden

[/tab] [tab title=Matt Quinney, AI Blog] I know I’ve been more absent from the message boards, Twitter, and to my greatest dismay, my blog recently, but in what I do write about and post, I’m sure you’ve seen that I’m a consistent Ty Corbin apologist. Now that we have that out there, let me briefly explain why.

– Corbin is a young coach in only his first gig. For a new guy, he couldn’t have landed with a more patient and willing management team in his back pocket. How many head coaches succeed to the level that Jazz fans expect in their first tenure?

– Look at this team. Most teams lose superstars and they go into rebuild-mode. A team trades its superstar for now talent, they are telling you that they are ready to shut it down and build through the draft. In consecutive seasons, the Jazz traded Carlos Boozer, Deron Williams, and Memo Okur (not so much a superstar but a leader on this team). And not once did the Millers or Kevin O’Connor even consider the word rebuild. They went to develop while winning. They went out and got some good talent through trades and free agency. But not one of those pieces is the kind of guy that should ever be more than the second or third option on a good team. Corbin has had to build a team around the left block and in his entire tenure, who has stepped up to be a leader on this team? Unfortunately, no one has. The Jazz front office wants him, Corbin, to be the leader, but a leader on court is not something he can be. Al Jefferson is a great person and a good player, but he’s not a leader. Paul Millsap could be a leader but seems to have shied from that role. And with a team full of wily veterans, who wants to listen to a group of 1st, 2nd. And 3rd year players? This team has no leader and should have embraced rebuild mode the moment they decided to trade Deron Williams.

– Free agency. In his first half season, his only job was to keep the team involved and not lose them. He did that. In his first full season, he got stuck with the lockout, had no training camp and due to an accelerated season, nearly no practice time. And he made the playoffs. This year, he has more than half his roster looking at free agency and they don’t know if they’ll be here next season and in some cases, whether they would have even seen March in Utah. How is a third year head coach supposed to manage a team of young guys coupled with so many guys who are in playing for their next contract?

I could go on, but bottom line is that I don’t think Corbin has had the right chances to make this team successful. Has he made mistakes? Sure. They’re often laid out on Twitter and on the blogosphere for all to see. But I think he’s had a raw deal. I have to believe the Jazz will embrace rebuild-mode next season. I think Corbin gets two more seasons to show what he’s got. Next year should be a huge step back in wins, but should also be a huge step forward for the young core. We’ll add a few pieces in the draft and probably even through free agency, but this team will be turned over to the young guys. If Corbin can continue to develop over the next two season and show an improvement year over year, then he stays. If he continues flat or even to slip, then let him go. But give him two more years.

Find more from Matt at the AI Blog and on Twitter @Matt_Quinney

[/tab][tab title=Grant Bagby, TornBySports]Braeden and Matt have made good points. Both clearly think Ty should stay for a couple more years. I know everyone has an opinion on this. But I am totally on the fence of whether Ty should stay or go. I had hoped that bringing in other minds would have helped sway me, but I stand here with the same conflict in my head. In my mind this comes to a few questions.

How forgiving are the Jazz fans? Ty Corbin has been a head coach as long as the core young guys have been in the NBA. Jazz nation has shown the willingness to forgive the young players when they make mistakes, why not Ty? As a young coach Ty is going to make mistakes. He will screw up rotations and draw bad plays to finish games. He is going to grow with the young players. My concern with this is whether we want the Jazz head coach to be growing with the young players. Does Corbin have the answers and methods to develop these players or are these players going to be Corbin’s guinea pigs? When it comes to this I begin to lean towards sending Corbin packing. I want a coach with some experience. I don’t want the head coach to be learning while working with players that are supposed to be the players of the future.

Another question: How big is the bias for veterans? I apologize to the blogger who wrote about Corbin’s past for not being able to link to your article, but it made clear where Ty comes from when it comes to basketball. He was a good NBA player. He would go to teams and become a starter until replaced by the upcoming young guy. Is that why it took so long for Hayward to get into the starting lineup? Is that why Favors or any other young player hasn’t been able to break into the starting lineup permanently? Many times it seems  the young players only see the floor more when Corbin has no other options, either from injury or desperation. Many have mentioned that maybe the Jazz will blow this team up with the upcoming free agency. The Jazz will have to sign some players to get to the salary floor if they do this. Will Corbin still favor those lesser skilled veterans over the younger players?

In the end, I think I am willing to wait another year to see Corbin show his true coaching colors. But I don’t know how much longer I can wait after that.

Follow me on Twitter @GrantTBS


About the author

Grant Bagby

Since moving to Utah in 2005, I have changed from following all sports in D.C/Virginia to following all sports in Utah. I am a Chicago Bulls fan first (Born and raised by my father), but I am also a hardcore Jazz fan with 7 years of being a season ticket holder under my belt. I started TornBySports to write about the BYU/Utah Rivalry after Max Hall ran his mouth.