Larry Krystkowiak

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Larry Krystkowiak
22 inches
Larry Krystkowiak in 2007
Utah Utes
Position Head coach
League Pacific-12 Conference
Personal information
Born (1964-09-23) September 23, 1964 (age 50)
Missoula, Montana
Nationality American
Listed height 6 ft 9 in (2.06 m)
Listed weight 220 lb (100 kg)
Career information
High school Big Sky (Missoula, Montana)
College Montana (1982–1986)
NBA draft 1986 / Round: 2 / Pick: 28th overall
Selected by the Chicago Bulls
Pro career 1986–1998
Position Power forward
Number 42
Coaching career 1998–present
Career history
As player:
1986–1987 San Antonio Spurs
19871992 Milwaukee Bucks
1992–1993 Utah Jazz
1993–1994 Orlando Magic
1994–1995 Chicago Bulls
1995–1996 Levallois (France)
1997 Los Angeles Lakers
1997–1998 Idaho Stampede (CBA)
As coach:
1998–2000 Montana (assistant)
2001–2002 Old Dominion (assistant)
2003–2004 Idaho Stampede (CBA)
2004–2006 Montana
2006–2007 Milwaukee Bucks (assistant)
20072008 Milwaukee Bucks
2010 USA U18 men's national team
2010–2011 New Jersey Nets (assistant)
2011–present Utah
Career highlights and awards

As coach:

As player:

Career NBA statistics
Points 3,425 (8.2 ppg)
Rebounds 2,051 (4.9 rpg)
Stats at

Larry Brett Krystkowiak (/krɨsˈkviæk/ kris-KOH-vee-ak;[1] born September 23, 1964) is a retired American professional basketball player, and current head coach of the Utah Utes men's basketball team.[2] His nicknames include Krysko and Special K.[3]

Early life[edit]

He was born in Missoula, Montana,[3] grew up primarily in Shelby, Montana, and finished his high school career at Big Sky High School in Missoula.[4]

College career[edit]

Krystkowiak played college basketball for the University of Montana from 1982 to 1986 and still holds the school records for career points scored (2,017) and rebounds (1,105).[5] He is the only person to have been named Big Sky Conference MVP three times (1984–1986).[6]

Professional playing career[edit]

Krystkowiak was selected by the Chicago Bulls in the 2nd round (28th overall pick) of the 1986 NBA Draft. He played power forward for nine seasons in the NBA, spending the bulk of his career with the Milwaukee Bucks. He also played for the San Antonio Spurs, Utah Jazz, Orlando Magic, Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers. In the 1988–89 season he averaged 12.7 points, 7.6 rebounds, 1.3 assists and over 30 minutes per game for the Bucks.[3] Over his NBA career, he averaged 8.1 points and 4.9 rebounds per contest.[3]

Early coaching career[edit]

Krystkowiak began his coaching career in 1998 as an assistant to Don Holst at his alma mater, the University of Montana. He coached at Montana until 2000 when he left to join Old Dominion as an assistant under former Griz head coach, Blaine Taylor.[6] He spent one season (2001–2002) at Old Dominion.

Krystkowiak got his first opportunity as a head coach with the CBA's Idaho Stampede in 2003–04. In his single season as the Stampede's head coach, he led the team to a 37–16 record and a CBA championship game berth.[5]

He was hired as head men's basketball coach at the University of Montana in May 2004. He led the Griz to a 42–20 overall record over the course of the next two seasons, reaching the NCAA tournament each year as a result of winning the Big Sky Conference tourney. In 2006 the Grizzlies beat heavily favored, fifth seed, Nevada, in the NCAA Tournament.

Milwaukee Bucks and NBA[edit]

In June 2006 Krystkowiak left Montana to take a job as an assistant coach with the Milwaukee Bucks under Terry Stotts. Krystkowiak was responsible for working with the Milwaukee's big men, notably second year players Andrew Bogut and Charlie Villanueva.[7] He was named head coach of the team on March 14, 2007, after Stotts was fired. Stotts had led the Bucks to a 23–41 record during the 2006–07 season.[8] He signed a reported 4-year contract with the Bucks, with an average annual salary of $2 million[9] Krystkowiak's NBA head coaching debut on March 15, 2007, resulted in a 101–90 victory over the San Antonio Spurs.

On April 17, 2008, Krystkowiak was fired as Milwaukee Bucks head coach after a disappointing season in which the Bucks compiled the league's sixth worst record.[10]

In July 2010 Krystkowiak joined the New Jersey Nets coaching staff alongside Avery Johnson and Sam Mitchell.[11]

University of Utah[edit]

On April 3, 2011, it was announced that Krystkowiak would take over the head coaching position for the University of Utah men's basketball team, as they transitioned into Utah's first season in the newly realigned Pac-12.[2]

After being named Utah's head coach, eight (8) players left the program to play elsewhere. Krystkowiak was forced to bring in several junior college and walk-on players to fill his depleted roster. In a season where starting center, David Foster, missed the entire season and starting point guard, Josh "Jiggy" Watkins, was dismissed halfway through, Krystkowiak and the Utes struggled to a 6-25 finish, including only three wins against their new Pac-12 opponents.

The 2012-2013 season showed much improvement for Krystkowiak's Utes. The additions of freshmen Jordan Loveridge and Brandon Taylor, as well as great play and leadership from senior center Jason Washburn, would help Utah more than double their win total from the previous season. On March 9, 2013, Utah closed out its season by defeating No. 19 Oregon, celebrating Senior Night at the Huntsman Center with the program's first victory over a ranked opponent since 2009. Utah then defeated USC and California in the first and second rounds of the Pac-12 tournament before losing a rematch with Oregon, the eventual champion.

Krystkowiak's third season saw the 2013-2014 Runnin' Utes reach their first postseason tournament under the coach. The addition of transfer point guard Delon Wright and an improved core of players led Utah to a 21-12 record, receiving an at-large bid to the NIT.

The National Polish-American Sports Hall of Fame nominated Krystkowiak for its Class of 2013.[12]

Personal life[edit]

Larry and his wife, Jan, have five children, Cam, Luc, Ben and twin girls Samantha and Finley.[5] Further details about his youth and background, including his relationship with his father are described in the SLTrib article.[13]

Head coaching record[edit]

Larry Krystkowiak's record as a head coach.


Team Year Regular Season Post Season
G W L Pct Finish Result
Idaho Stampede 2003–04[5] 53 37 16 .698 Lost CBA championship game

Men's college basketball[edit]

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Montana Grizzlies (Big Sky Conference) (2004–2006)
2004–05 Montana 18–13 9–5 2nd NCAA First Round
2005–06 Montana 24–7 10–4 2nd NCAA Second Round
Montana: 42–20 (.677) 19–9 (.679)
Utah Utes (Pacific-12 Conference) (2011–present)
2011–12 Utah 6–25 3–15 11th
2012–13 Utah 15–18 5–13 10th
2013–14 Utah 21–12 9–9 T–8th NIT First Round
2014–15 Utah 26–9 13–5 T–2nd NCAA Sweet Sixteen
Utah: 68–63 (.519) 30–42 (.417)
Total: 110–83 (.570)

      National champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion


Team Year Regular Season Post Season
G W L Pct Finish Result
Milwaukee Bucks 2006–07 18* 5* 13* .278* Last in Central Division
14th in Eastern Conference
28th (of 30) in NBA
Missed Playoffs
Milwaukee Bucks 2007–08 82 26 56 .317 Last in Central Division
13th in Eastern Conference
25th (of 30) in NBA
Missed Playoffs
Career 100 31 69 .310

* Record is only for portion of the season after Krystkowiak took over. Finish is for full season.

See also[edit]


External links[edit]