MOORHEAD – When you have one of the 30 more stressful jobs in the National Basketball Association, the sport can virtually consume a coach’s life 24/7/365.
A grueling 82-game regular season is followed by an exhausting postseason that can stretch from mid-April to the end of June. There are countless demands on time from the organization and from the media.
Those factors have prevented David Joerger, head coach of the Memphis Grizzlies, from returning to Minnesota the last few years, he said.
However, the 1992 Staples Area High School graduate and 1997 Minnesota State University Moorhead alum will be home Saturday to conduct a coaches clinic at Nemzek Hall on the MSUM campus. Long-time NBA and NCAA basketball coach Jeff Bzdelik, a Grizzlies assistant, will accompany Joerger.
“It’s a place I love. Obviously, I went to school there, but more than that I have a lot of good memories from high school playing up there in the regions,” Joerger said by phone from Memphis last month. “It seems like everything we did was up there. If we wanted to go shopping, a lot of times we would go to Fargo-Moorhead.
“I’ve got a lot of friends there. I haven’t been back for a while, so I’m excited about that. I’m also excited for the clinic to be able to see people I might have played against, played with, knew in college or went to school with. It’s a small-town feel even though it’s a bigger city. It seemed that everyone got along and we had a lot of good times.”
The clinic will be from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Cost is $100 for early registration. Walk-up registration Saturday will be $125. Additional coaches from the same coaching staff will cost $75.
Lunch will be provided from noon to 1 p.m. Those interested in attending may sign up online at http://tickets.mnstate.edu/search/clinic. The camp is open to coaches at any level of basketball.
Joerger, who was considered for the Minnesota Timberwolves head coaching job last season before returning to Memphis, was one of the most successful minor league head coaches of all-time – winning five championships in seven years. He spent the next six years as a Grizzlies assistant before being named head coach June 27, 2013.