On March 9, 2007, the late Larry H. Miller spoke at length about Karl Malone during which Larry touched upon topics including the bickering he and Malone had, how Karl got himself motivated and how dependable Malone was every single game.
For what it’s worth, I see no parallels between Karl and Larry’s spats and the war of words Jazz CEO Greg Miller and Malone had in February of 2012. Greg Miller’s comments sounded childish and petty, but I’m very glad he has since made amends and brought Karl back into the Jazz fold. The ultimate goal should be to build the best basketball team possible – not harbor grudges that could only hurt the organization’s image and marginalize their resources.
For the sake of the league – it’s better when a great like Karl Malone is able to stay connected to the franchise he played for. That’s not always the case when you consider the likes of Michael Jordan (Wizards, Bobcats), Larry Bird (Pacers – although he is from Indiana), Kevin McHale (Timberwolves), Isaiah Thomas (Raptors), and Patrick Ewing (Magic) – but hopefully Karl can remain a part of the Jazz for as long as he’s willing to be one. No NBA franchise has won more titles over the past 30 years than the Lakers (yes, it pains me to type that) and they’ve never been shy on putting former players such as Jerry West, Mitch Kupchack and Magic Johnson into their front office and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Kurt Rambis on the bench as assistant coaches.
Maintaining connections to the past shouldn’t overshadow the ability to get the current job done, but if capable – those resources should be utilized to their fullest potential. The Jazz were privileged to have the greatest power forward in NBA history be apart of their organization for 18 seasons. It’s encouraging to see them putting aside their differences to take advantage of it.