Local News

Friday, Aug 08 2014 12:42 PM

'First Look': New Bakersfield Jam coach ready for season

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    New Bakersfield Jam head coach Nate Bjorkgren joins in on "First Look with Scott Cox."

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    New Bakersfield Jam head coach Nate Bjorkgren talks about plans for the season on "First Look with Scott Cox."

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By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN

The Bakersfield Jam have a new coach and he's ready to bring the heat to another level.

Nate Bjorkgren arrived in Bakersfield a week ago from Iowa and spent time with Phoenix Suns coaches and players.

Earlier this year, the team entered a hybrid collaboration with the Phoenix Suns that would allow the teams to work together.

"The communication with the Suns is daily and we play the same style," Bjorkgren said Friday on "First Look with Scott Cox."

The Jam play in the National Basketball Association Development League, or D-League. It's a league that, according to Bjorkgren, is the toughest yet second greatest league.

As part of a D-League, the team roster for the Jam changes every couple of months. A Jam player can be drafted to the NBA mid-season and Bjorkgren has to work with those abrupt changes.

The great part of having an athlete playing in the D-League, Bjorkgren said, is they have the opportunity to develop their game and skills in hopes of moving on to the next level, the NBA.

"I'll say this to the guys at the beginning of the year," the coach said. "You give me everything you got on the floor, I'll give you everything I got in trying to get you called up or get you a job overseas."

If the players feel that from the coaches, Bjorkgren added, that's what it's all about.

The Jam schedule is still being built but the first game should be sometime in mid-November, the coach said.

 

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