Utah Jazz add longtime NBA assistant Irv Roland to coaching staff

Utah Jazz head coach Quin Snyder (Russell Isabella-USA TODAY Sports)
Utah Jazz head coach Quin Snyder (Russell Isabella-USA TODAY Sports) /

The Utah Jazz have worked diligently to upgrade the staff around Head Coach Quin Snyder this offseason. First, they added Erdem Can from the Turkish league. Yesterday, they brought longtime NBA assistant Irv Roland into their braintrust.

Roland last worked for the Houston Rockets from 2017 to 2019. In 2018, he was part of Mike D’Antoni’s Western Conference finals staff. He’ll bring valuable, high-stakes NBA experience to Coach Snyder’s team.

Roland has made a name for himself in the NBA with his knack for individual player development. He’s worked with Kevin Durant, Trae Young, Kyrie Irving and of course, James Harden.  The Utah Jazz will be hoping that Roland can assist in guiding star guard Donovan Mitchell through one more, and perhaps final, leap forward in his development.

More than just a basketball mind, Roland is devoted to social activism. The murder of George Floyd reportedly awoke a dormant sense of indignation in Roland, who has since attended protests against police brutality, and even organized food drives for the families of victims of the same.

That kind of experience is as valuable to the Utah Jazz as any on-court guidance he may offer. Roland stands to contribute to the cause of guiding young men in their development as players and people, which is a role the NBA’s best coaches accept with enthusiasm. In Irv Roland, the Jazz have hired the sort of mentor that successful NBA teams need.

Roland got his start in the NBA with the Boston Celtics in 2004, assisting with video analysis. Since then, the 39-year-old has had an NBA job more often than he hasn’t. His recent hire by the Utah Jazz contributes to an already-impressive resume for the young man, both on and off the floor.

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Roland will get his first taste of coaching in Salt Lake City on October 4, when the Utah Jazz host the San Antonio Spurs in preseason action.