Dave Joerger won 5 minor league championships, 4 of which came with the Dakota Wizards.
Here's part 2 of our series from Memphis where we followed Joerger in his first year as the Memphis Grizzlies head coach.
(Tia Streeter) Dave Joerger considers Fed Ex Forum and Memphis home. But he credits the minor leagues and Bismarck with fueling his fire for the next level
Dave Joerger's journey to being an NBA head coach went through Bismarck, twice. From 1997 to 2004, and then again in 2006-2007. Joerger has skyrocketed to success, but he says many things have just fallen in his path.
(Dave Joerger) Why me? How did I end up here, it could have been somebody else. I'm just very fortunate and I'm humbled by the opportunity and I'm enjoying it. Its still just basketball, and its still just head coaching, its just a little different.
(Tia Streeter) Joerger says the years he spent in the minor leagues were important, and in no way shape or form would he be an NBA head coach without them. One lesson stands out.
(Dave Joerger) when I came back to Bismarck and we were in the D League its not as easy to flip players and I really learned a lot about trying to make your guys better really developing players that you have and I think that's really helped us this year.
(Tia Streeter) From the minor leagues to the NBA, Joerger says professional basketball has always been his dream. But he understands coaching is a profession that highly reflects success.
(Dave Joerger) I don't look at it that I've done anything. A lot of guys get jobs, but not a lot of them get to keep anything. So I feel like if I can keep this thing going for a couple years, then I will look back and say maybe I did something."
(Tia Streeter) This season the Grizzlies have faced injuries which have reflected in the win column. The Grizz are 17 and 19, and four games out of a playoff spot. A tough start for a team which made the Western Conference Finals last season.
(Tia Streeter) Recognize this face? Tomorrow, we hear about another former Wizards head coach Duane Ticknor. His relationship with Dave Joerger has the pair back on the sidelines together.
(Duane Ticknor) . I wanted to be here for him and for me it doesn't matter where we are at. As long as were back together"
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