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He didn’t have to worry about that in Utah. His 1,127 wins with one NBA franchise is a record. He had the unflinching support of ownership and never had to coddle players. Five of his former players already have banners hanging in the arena rafters: Mark Eaton, Darrell Griffith, Jeff Hornacek, Malone and Stockton.

“He has never been given anything he hasn’t earned,” Malone said. “And he’s definitely earned this with the Jazz. There’ll never be another one like him.”