Exploring Quin Snyder’s Journey and Impact with the Utah Jazz

Ultimately, change was necessary on all fronts.

The Utah Jazz, as a team, had run its course, and big roster changes were coming. So after eight years at the helm, Quin Snyder was ready for something different. More importantly, he wanted time away from the game.

“That rejuvenation was just being able to spend time with my family, driving kids to school, those types of things that you’re not really involved with, for obvious reasons. It was it was a good period for me,” Snyder, now head coach of the Atlanta Hawks, said on Tuesday night. “That doesn’t mean that you don’t look back really fondly. I think we’re in a good place here, but again, that was a big part of my life.”

After stepping down as head coach of the Utah Jazz following the 2021-22 NBA season, Snyder said he spent the rest of the calendar year completely away from the game, hardly even watching basketball. He recovered from hip replacement surgery and then was largely at home with his family until he took over in Atlanta with 21 games remaining in the 2022-23 season.

That time away not only allowed Snyder to recharge, but also gave him a chance to reflect on his coaching philosophies and think about the game differently, which has impacted the way he has approached coaching the Hawks.

“A significant amount of things, really on both sides of the ball,” Snyder said. “You want to establish a style of play that fits your personnel, and that’s a process. … There’s a lot of things you’re finding out about the team, and you’re finding out about individual players, and you’re tinkering with that stuff, and it takes time.”

Initially, after leaving his coaching position with the Jazz, his thoughts were trained on the on-court product, on the performance of the team — good and bad — and his personal performance as coach. But now, when he thinks about his time with the Jazz, it’s the personal connections that stand out the most.

“There’s so many ways that time impacted me and my family, it was great years,” Snyder said. “So many people within the organization, that you’re close with, players that I’ve had a chance to see, during the course of games this year. Fun probably understates it. As far as the memories there that are there, you wouldn’t leave out the fans and the people in the community that made it not just meaningful, but impactful for me and my family.”

With the Hawks, Snyder is now navigating a completely different situation than he had in Utah — a differently constructed team with different strengths and weaknesses, under new management — but one that comes with all of the pressures and challenges of being a head coach.

And while Snyder admits to not being able to keep up with what every team in the league is doing on a night-to-night basis, he has kept an eye on the Jazz and is looking forward to his first trip back to the Delta Center on March 15.

“You’re not there very long (as a visiting team), it’s hard to reconnect with friends and things like that, and your focus is on the game,” Snyder said. “Other things obviously creep in and you think about them, but I’m thinking about the Jazz against the Hawks tonight.”

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