The Issue Between Deron Williams and Jerry Sloan: Sideburns
The NBA trade deadline was last Thursday and there were so many players, future draft picks and money moving between teams that I don’t even want to attempt to analyze who the winners and losers were. But there was one move that happened just before deadline that really made me think. The trade between the Utah Jazz and the New Jersey Nets raises question; “did the tension between Deron Williams and Jerry Sloan push both of them away from the Jazz?”. Whenever I think about Deron Williams, a different question comes to my mind; “where are Deron William’s sideburns?”. After doing a little bit of research, I think the two questions are more interrelated than anyone has previously considered, and the answer to the second question may help us answer the first one.
As shown above, Deron Williams has been sporting the bowl-cut/thin-sideburns hairdo for a long time. At first I thought it was just some weird style that he liked, or maybe he used to go to the Jazz’s in-house hairdresser and said “just cut it”. The lack of sideburns reminded me of the days when my mom would take me to SuperCuts and when the lady would ask me if I wanted my sideburns trimmed I would just nod yes, since I wasn’t sure what sideburns were.
But recently, even with Deron sporting a full chinstrap beard, the hairy area right beside his ears has been lacking thickness in comparison to the rest of his head and face. If he has a beard then the logic above doesn’t make any sense because sideburns should be a big part of the chinstrap, and usually host the same thickness and consistency. Williams’ sideburns do neither of those, and look the exact same as they did at the start of his career.
With all the rumors swirling around the recent departures of Deron Williams and long time coach Jerry Sloan from the Utah Jazz, there is speculation that they didn’t see eye-to-eye on a few aspects of the game. The departure of a star player due to a player-coach dispute is not a new phenomenon in the world of professional sports. This has been seen before with Shaq and Phil Jackson on the Lakers, and Terrel Owens and every coach he has ever played for. Surprisingly enough, there is one historical example of a star player and a coach disputing and departing from a team, due to a disagreement over sideburns. During a stint on the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant Softball Team, Don Mattingly and C. Montgomery Burns famously argued over this point. Burns’ dislike for sideburns (and confusion over what sideburns are) and Mattingly’s refusal to satisfy Burns resulted in Mattingly quitting the team. Luckily, this event was documented and is available through the link here.
I am not going to pretend that I have inside information into the reasons behind the departures of Williams and Sloan from the Jazz, but if the similar style of Williams’ and Mattingly’s haircuts are any indication, this may have been more than just a dispute over playing time. My previous conclusion that Deron William’s had a strange case of alopecia in the area of skin right beside his ears, could actually have been an example of how demanding coach Sloan was on his players. Who would have thought that Jerry Sloan and Mr. Burns had so much in common?
If this on-court conversation between Deron Willams and Jerry Sloan was anything like the one between Don Mattingly and Mr. Burns, the reasons behind the recent decision by the Jazz to trade Deron Williams is much clearer.
Don’t be surprised when Deron Williams has some furry sideburns next month while playing for the Nets.