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Former NBA star Deron Williams gets it real about his stained relationship from the past with the late legendary coach Jerry Sloan. 

Joining Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson’s ‘All the Smoke’, the three-time All-star talked about how things started when he was still up and coming into the league.

“Our relationship was definitely strained at the end. I think I held onto that rookie year, not starting — how he didn’t really play me, and would play me a couple of minutes here. I think I took that personally for a while when I was younger and kind of held that grudge. So, I think that affected me a little bit.”

Williams further admitted that at certain times, it was his fault for being a stubborn one.

“I was definitely a little s*** at times — a little prima donna. I also, I knew how coach Sloan was, and I think I kind of would poke the bear just to see his reactions, too. It was kind of like a little back and forth thing; s*** that I definitely wouldn’t do now, knowing what I know now. But I always respected coach Sloan; I learned a lot from him. My best years were definitely in Utah. I got a lot of love and respect for him as a coach and as a person.”

The 37-year-old former point guard finally revealed that he fixed what was broken with him and the coaching icon a few years back before its death.

“I always knew I needed to reach out and apologize. He was definitely regressing a little bit. And our conversations were kind of, they actually got heated a couple times — well he got heated a couple times. It was almost like he was right back in the moment when I pissed him off. But I was happy I was able to get a chance before he passed, to talk with him and apologize for being a little s***.”

Before D-Will entered into the league as the 3rd pick of the 2005 draft, Sloan was already a great one of his own — leading Karl Malone, John Stockton, and the mighty Utah Jazz to back-to-back Finals appearances in 1997 and 1998. During the mid to late 2000s, the two were instrumental in Salt Lake City’s sustained appearance in the postseason which kicked off from the past two decades, highlighted by a trip to the Western Conference Finals in 2007. Williams also managed to bag two of his three All-Star selections on his time with the team while averaging over 19 markers and almost 11 dimes. 

It was reported then that Sloan and Williams’ outlook with each other had soured during the 2011 season. Entering its second half, the two went separate ways — with Sloan coming out first by shocking the basketball land and stepping down from Utah’s head coaching helm. Few days later, Williams was shipped to the New Jersey Nets, which is now known as the Brooklyn Nets. 

On May 22, 2020, the hall of fame tactician succumbed from Parkinson’s disease and dementia at age 78.