Well... let's allow the discussion to begin (or in Boozer's case... let it continue)!
We've been waiting, analyzing and conjecturing for months about Carlos Boozer and what he will ultimately decide. "To opt out, or to not opt-out, that is the question!"
As I see it... Boozer has an interesting decision laid out before him. Sure, he says that he wants to be back. But really? Boozer will do what's best for Boozer. And yet, to admit, the Jazz will do what's best for the Jazz. There will have to be a mutual investment on both parts to ultimately allow Boozer to make his decision.
Yahoo Sports is reporting that the Jazz may not want to invest in Boozer after all. Even though Boozer is the one who will make the decision, the Jazz could ultimately trade him afterward (if he doesn't opt-out). Here's the commentary via Yahoo Sports:
"After Utah’s first two losses in the series, Deron Williams told friends he was growing increasingly frustrated with the softness of some of his teammates. Williams has previously targeted Andrei Kirilenko for criticism, but he’s said to have also soured considerably on Carlos Boozer .
After Monday’s season-ending loss, Boozer now says he’d like to return to the Jazz, adding that he feels like “one of those cornerstone people who brought this team back to prominence.” In truth, the decision might not be entirely up to him. Even if Boozer doesn’t opt out of his contract, the Jazz are expected to explore trading him and devote their resources to keeping Paul Millsap ."
The key to understanding this analysis is that... if Boozer knows the intention of the Jazz (which he will eventually) and doesn't get a promise of future investment, he may just opt-out and walk away. So really, the question is... what do the Jazz want to do? Keep him, let him walk or trade him.
I believe that there will be teams vying for Boozer's services. In specific, Detroit and Memphis could possibly be serious suitors (along with perhaps OKC and Atlanta). Will Boozer's economic value be high enough to walk away from $12.3 million next season?
My Prediction: I actually believe the Yahoo Sports report. The Jazz would like to have both Millsap and Boozer back next season, however, because of luxury tax concerns, the Jazz will only be allowed to invest in one of them. I think the Jazz want to keep Millsap more than Boozer (he'll be cheaper and more durable). Thus, Boozer will discover this intention (along with his relatively high economic value) and ultimately opt-out. If he doesn't, the Jazz will trade him to one of those teams mentioned above... for cap space, a player and a draft pick. Thanks for playing for us Booz! Best of luck.