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Gregg Popovich releases a statement on the passing of Jerry Sloan

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The NBA has lost another legend.

Utah Jazz v San Antonio Spurs, Game 1 Photo by Garrett W. Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images

The NBA has lost another legend. Former Bulls player and longtime Jazz head coach Jerry Sloan has passed away at age 78 due to complications with Parkinson’s disease and Lewy body dementia.

Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich has released a statement on his passing.

“It’s a sad day for all of us who knew Jerry Sloan. Not only on the basketball court but, more importantly, as a human being. He was genuine and true. And that is rare.

He was a mentor for me from afar until I got to know him. A man who suffered no fools, he possessed a humor, often disguised, and had a heart as big as the prairie.”

Sloan spent 23 of his 26 years coaching the the Jazz, where took the program to unmatched heights with Karl Malone and John Stockton. He finished his coaching career with 1,221 regular-season victories, behind only Don Nelson and Lenny Wilkens, and was later passed by Pop. He and Pop are also the only coaches in NBA history to win at least 1,000 games with one team.

The Pounding the Rock family sends their deepest condolences to the Sloan family and Jazz organization.