Blazers coach Terry Stotts honors Jack Ramsay with 1970s jacket
PORTLAND, Ore. -- Blazers coach Terry Stotts donned a plaid jacket on Friday night to wish a happy birthday to his predecessor, Hall of Fame coach Jack Ramsay.
Stotts, 56, wore the 1970s style jacket and a wide-collared shirt with no tie during Portland's 102-94 home victory over Utah on Friday. The throwback fashion was an homage to Ramsay, who turned 89 on Friday.
"Dr. Jack" coached the Blazers from 1976 until 1986, guiding the team to the 1977 championship, which stands as the only title in franchise history. Known for forward-thinking approach to fitness and adventurous clothing choices, Ramsay retired from coaching in 1988 with a record of 864-783 (.525) and was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in 1992. He went on to enjoy a long career as a broadcaster, retiring in 2013 as he faced health issues.
"I wanted to do a tribute sometime to Coach [Jack] Ramsay," Stotts said after the game, noting that his wife helped him find the jacket on Amazon.com or eBay. "I didn't know when it would be."
The tribute even included a musical element. One of the Blazers' public relations officials played "Stayin' Alive" as Stotts entered the press room for his post-game media availability.
"Our whole team respected it," Blazers guard Damian Lillard said. "We understood it. He was showing respect to a past Trail Blazers coach, the only coach who has won a championship. It was kind of fun with that relaxed look. To see him do something like that, I think it was cool."
Stotts' jacket drew so much social media attention that he was a trending topic on Twitter.
"I'm not much of a fashionista but I think he was able to pull it off," Blazers center Robin Lopez quipped. The Oregonian reported in October that Stotts, who was playing his college basketball at Oklahoma during the Blazers' title season, posted a quote from Ramsay in his Moda Center office: "Teams that play together beat those teams with superior players who play more as individuals."