Today was officially Day 1 for the players, but for Quin Snyder and his coaching staff it represented several months of work coming to fruition.
From the moment Snyder took over as the Utah Jazz head coach, his staff has been working tirelessly to be prepared for today’s practice and the rest of training camp.
“We have worked at it pretty hard. I felt it was important for our staff to really, really have a strong command of what we want to teach and what I want to see,” Snyder said. “The level of intensity and the juice you bring into the gym, that to me is hugely important for our players to feel that when we start. To have a really clear picture of how we want to do things allows [the coaches] to be passionate in teaching it. If you are little gray then it is hard to be as demanding.”
The “clear picture of how we want to do things” started with a multi-day coaching retreat in which the staff dissected every aspect of the game and how they would teach it. The retreat included team-building moments, but was dominated by endless hours of basketball coaching philosophy.
From there the group spent hours debating and the ins and outs of how they would teach. The went from the meeting rooms down to the hardwood, breaking down the tiniest details of spacing, pick angles and more.
Most recently, Snyder had his coaches prepare scouting reports for FIBA teams and take the other coaches through a film session and a shootaround for this “practice” scouting report. Snyder says the details got down to what to capitalize and what to boldface in your reports.
This work came to fruition today as Snyder and his staff ran the players through a briskly paced practice that incorporated somewhere from 15 to 20 stations.
Universally, the players were impressed. All of them mentioned the quick pace when speaking to the media after their practice had ended. The words “details,” “pace,” and “intention” were used consistently as the players described the coaches’ approach to the first practice of training camp.