Jazz 'desperately wanted’ Quin Snyder to return as head coach, Danny Ainge says

On Monday, Jazz owner Ryan Smith, CEO Danny Ainge and Snyder held an emotional press conference announcing the end of an eight-year relationship. 

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Head coach Quin Snyder of the Utah Jazz talks to the media after the Dallas Mavericks playoff game on April 28, 2022, at vivint.SmartHome Arena in Salt Lake City. 

Head coach Quin Snyder of the Utah Jazz talks to the media after the Dallas Mavericks playoff game on April 28, 2022, at vivint.SmartHome Arena in Salt Lake City.  (Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images)

“It was just time,” Snyder said on Monday. “I tried to give voice to that and it really isn’t any more complicated than that as far as trying to look into a lot of different reasons. I just felt like I got to a place where it was done.”

Last week, ESPN reported that Utah had offered Snyder a contract extension, as well as allowing him to return to the team on his previous contract, which had two years remaining. 

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According to the report, “philosophical issues” was the main topic of conversation between the two sides as Snyder mulled the decision to return as head coach.

Ainge, who stepped down as general manager of the Boston Celtics after the 2020-2021 season, said he “desperately wanted” Snyder to remain head coach. 

Utah Jazz head coach Quin Snyder during the Dallas Mavericks playoff game on April 23, 2022, in Salt Lake City.

Utah Jazz head coach Quin Snyder during the Dallas Mavericks playoff game on April 23, 2022, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)

“We have spent the last few weeks talking, Quin and I, a lot about a lot of different things,” Ainge said at Monday’s press conference. “And I think it’s pretty clear, we desperately wanted him to stay. And at the same time, I’ve walked away from coaching and I walked away from being a general manager after 18 years in Boston, and so I trust that Quin knows more what’s best for him and his family, much more than we do.”

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As far as who the Jazz are looking at to be their next head coach, Ainge says this coaching search will be different from the previous two he undertook as general manager of the Celtics. 

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“Now, I’m in a position where I haven’t really been looking to the same extent for those coaches,” Ainge continued. “There’s a lot of names I know, I’m familiar with in the coaching world. But this will be much different than the two previous ones, and probably more thorough.” 

Quin Snyder coaching the Utah Jazz against the Mavericks on April 25, 2022, at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas.

Quin Snyder coaching the Utah Jazz against the Mavericks on April 25, 2022, at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas. (Cooper Neill/NBAE via Getty Images)

“We’re going to take our time,” Smith added. “Got to get it right.”

In eight seasons as head coach of the Jazz, Snyder had a record of 372-264, leading Utah to one of the more successful runs in the history of the organization. He is the secondwinningest coach in franchise history, but failed to ever make it past the second round of the NBA playoffs. 

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