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Sloan's one-liners entertain reporters
By Mike McGraw | Daily Herald Staff
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Published: 3/9/2010 11:23 PM | Updated: 3/9/2010 11:24 PM

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Utah coach Jerry Sloan delivered several good lines while meeting with reporters before Tuesday's game against the Bulls.

Sloan was asked how he's lasted 22 years with the Jazz when most other NBA coaches seem to lose touch with their players within a few seasons.

"I tell our players, 'I'm going to be here and you may not,' " he said. "I've been real fortunate that our owner gave me the opportunity to say that when he first started out. Coaches are going to be here and players are expendable. - If you don't have support, you don't have a fighting chance."

Someone asked Sloan what he thought about his 1970s-era photo on a mural honoring Bulls legends that went up outside the locker room this year. He hadn't seen it.

"I don't think it affects me in any way," Sloan said. "Like my friend said, 'I'll still eat hamburgers.' "

When it was pointed out that Jazz rookie Othyus Jeffers, a West Side native, requested 150 tickets for Tuesday's game, Sloan responded, "I couldn't afford to buy tickets when I played. These young guys make a lot more money."

Boozer can wait: This was Utah's only Chicago stop of the season, but it's been a long time since Jazz forward Carlos Boozer went on the radio last summer and mentioned that he'd enjoy playing for the Bulls.

"My thing right now is trying to get my team as high up in the conference standings as we can get," Boozer said in the Salt Lake Tribune. "The rest of that stuff will take care of itself this summer. I don't have any worries about the Bulls or their organization at all. Right now, I just want our team to win, period."

Boozer will be a free agent this summer and the Bulls are planning to sign someone. He probably ranks just below LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and Joe Johnson on the wish list.

West Side success: Jazz swingman Othyus Jeffers, signed last week to a 10-day contract, had a remarkable journey from Chicago's West Side to the NBA.

Two of his older brothers were killed by gunshots in separate incidents. Then after Jeffers' junior season at UIC, he was shot in the thigh while trying to protect his sister from an angry boyfriend. Jeffers, who played at Hubbard High School, felt he needed to get away from the West Side and finished his college career at NAIA Robert Morris College.