Wednesday, November 10, 2010
The Jazz did it again. Another comeback... another victory! The final score was 104-94. Even Stuff the Magic Dragon couldn't handle our magical run. Take that Superman! Stuff it, Stuff!
Our trio of DWill, Paul Millsap, and Al Jefferson led the charge for the Jazz. Deron was impressive directing traffic. He took over when he had to make plays. DWill finished with 30 points and 14 rebounds. Paul had 23 points, while Big Al came up with 21.
These guys are proving to be a solid combo of talents for the Jazz... Perimeter general, all-around stat-sheet stuffer, and deep post scorer. With the way Paul is playing, the sky is truly the limit. Al isn't too far behind him either. All in all, I'm discovering that this team is really fun to watch.
It doesn't get much better than this... an east coast run. Let's hope we can continue our impressive play into Atlanta.
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Can you even fathom such a miracle? Could someone even fabricate a storyline so truly indescribable as this one?
Millsap was the player who looked like the true superstar tonight. Big Paul went off for a career high 46 points and carried the Jazz to victory's bliss.
To think the Jazz haven't beat the Heat in Miami in over 7 years, and to come away with a victory over the Big 3 while being so shorthanded is absolutely phenomenal. Frankly, I could care less about what we've done so far in the season. That game right there was an amazing shot of adrenaline and I'm excited for what the Jazz can do next. I can only imagine that it'll serve as a tremendous boost of confidence cooler. So, with that being said, I'll say this to the opposing prognosticators, bandwagon observers, and the NBA's blue-bloods... Stick it, Heat! Take that, Big 3! Screw you, NBA! The Jazz will not be denied. Kudos to Millsap. Way to go Jazz! Keep up your surprising, winning ways. I now dub the new Big 3 to be the mighty Paul Millsap, the resilient Ronnie Price, and the strangely comical Fess.
Thursday, November 4, 2010
- AK has put on some weight, and it's not just due to his stylish new haircut. He also looks much more alive on the court.
- Big Al is out of shape and lost in the offense, but he's still putting up good numbers. It's hard for me to even see how he scores. . . he reminds me a bit of the Mailman in that you watch the game for awhile and think, "He's not doing much" and then look at the box score and he's put up 23 and 11.
- Millsap has been a BEAST in some early games. Fun to watch.
- Miles looked terrible -- absolutely terrible -- against Phoenix. Airballs, fouls, missed assignments, travels. Woof. He's put up good stats since then but he's a veteran of the system now. . . it was shocking to watch him stumble around like that.
- I like Jerry's early confidence in Hayward. It's a good sign.
- Our bench is not deep, and it's stocked with a lot of new guys. Injuries, particularly in the playoffs, are going to devastate us.
Friday, October 22, 2010
Jeremy Evans has been a welcome addition to the Jazz roster after playing his way onto the team during the pre-season. Nobody expected it to happen. No one had heard of him coming out of Western Kentucky. But, here he is... making all of us (so called) draft experts look bad.
The pogo-stick leaper has been electric during the pre-season. He's played to his strengths (rebounding and garbage-man hustle plays) and provided the team with a boost of athleticism that has been desperately needed. It should be interesting to see if he'll be able to break the regular season lineup. I can't wait to see his 1st alley-oop dunk!
The Jazz need to be calculated and intelligent as they move forward with Evans. We ought to sign him to a low-cost, 3-year deal, similar to what Millsap got when he was drafted. Evans' has the abilty, athleticism, and attitude to contribute and improve our team. I'm excited to eventually see how he progresses.
It was a sad day to see our reserve hopefuls get cut from the team. Sundiata, Othyus, Demetris Nichols, and Ryan Thompson all gave strong pre-season showings. It was the most competitive group of hopefuls that I can remember trying out for the Jazz. Sundiata was unfortunately stuck behind 3 solid guaranteed contracts at PG. Othyus had trouble shooting from the perimeter despite showing skills, activity and toughness in other aspects of his game. Nichols had two strong pre-season shooting nights. And Thompson was the one with perhaps the most "potential" of the group. I wouldn't be surprised if the Jazz keep each one of these guys on speed-dial for the next time an injury hits our team. Frankly, I like each one of them, especially Othyus and Ryan Thompson.
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
I can't say that the "newness" of our team will translate into more wins or a better season, but I think we'll have more fun cheering on our team and following our progress and improvement. I like our roster. Al Jefferson brings an exciting element of power under the basket in replacement of Boozer. I'm looking forward to seeing him play in a Jazz uniform. Gordon Hayward should be able to contribute and get some immediate court time. It'll be fun to see him progress as a Jazzman. It's great to have Raja Bell back in a Jazz uniform. Watson and Elson should at least play some important minutes in reserve for us. And frankly, I like the rookies we brought in to fight for a roster spot. Jeremy Evans and Ryan Thompson could be welcome surprises for our youth movement (or for our passionates fans in Orem). Othyus and Sundiata could have a battle on their hands to keep their positions. There's a lot to look forward to this season. I welcome the excitement and fresh start. Bring on training camp, pre-season, and the start of the new-age Utah Jazz.
Friday, September 24, 2010
Monday, September 20, 2010
Thursday, September 9, 2010
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
Sunday, August 29, 2010
Until that time comes, we're still waiting upon Kyrylo Fesenko, the Fess, to agree upon our qualifying offer. According to this article from Hoopsworld, Fess has had some opportunities to go elsewhere but nobody has committed to him based upon his restricted FA status. I'm not certain how much better Fess will get, but for now, we're in dire need of another center. Apparently, the Jazz have also looked at Francisco Elson as a possible fill-in center prospect. Are there any other centers out there who could possibly make a difference to our team? The center prospects are definitely numbered (DJ Mbenga? Earl Barron? or perhaps just maybe... wait for it... our long lost former Jazzman, Jarron Collins).
Thursday, August 12, 2010
Sunday, August 8, 2010
Thursday, August 5, 2010
Sunday, August 1, 2010
With that being said, how do you suppose the Jazz will choose to fill out the roster?
As the Jazz continue to add players to the roster, their salary commitments will only rise further past the luxury tax line... meaning additional moves will cost double. Who can we add to the roster for next to nothing?
The Jazz are slowly moving forward in negotiation will Kyrylo Fesenko. His salary committment ought to raise that luxury level up to $1-2 million more. Sundiata Gaines and Othyus Jeffers will most likely return based on the fact that they're relatively cheap and sitting on non-guaranteed contracts... $700K per player. And thus, we can expect more of this fanatically stellar play! I'd expect Jeremy Evans to become our cheap 2nd Round artistic project. If I were a D-League star looking to find a roster spot, now would be a perfect time to try-out for the Jazz. I wonder if I should get in shape! It's time to uncover the cheap hidden gem.
Saturday, July 24, 2010
"I hope someday somebody will walk up to my kid without me there, and say, 'Let me tell you about your dad.' And I hope it's not anything sports related."
"A strain... What's a strain?" Good article from the D-News.
Friday, July 23, 2010
1. LA Lakers - Out goes Jordan Farmar and possibly Shannon Brown. In comes Steve Blake and Matt Barnes. The core remains remarkably the same... Kobe, Fisher, Artest, Odom, Gasol and Bynum. How do you stop this team? I envision another 3-peat on the horizon. Yuck!
2. Portland TrailBlazers - The rise of the Blazers will start this year. They're big... Oden, Camby, Pryz, Aldridge. They're athletic... Batum, Roy, Matthews. They're deep... Bayless, Fernandez, and Babbitt. And they're experienced... Dre Miller. This team is ready to blow up.
3. Dallas Mavericks - I don't know what to think of the Mavs. They're a solid regular season team with limited ability to win in the playoffs. With Dirk, they'll always be competitive. Perhaps this is the team that will drop out. But, I don't see it. Kidd, Marion, Butler, Terry and their youth (Beaubois and Jones) will keep them in the hunt.
4. Utah Jazz - Al Jefferson should have a huge year. He'll replace Boozer admirably. Millsap will get more opportunity. And we have the best point guard in the NBA. The Lakers always await us though...
5. OKC Thunder - OKC made the right moves this summer. They got bigger with Aldrich and added depth shooters with Daquan Cook and MoPete. Westbrook, Harden, and Green will improve and Durant will be an MVP candidate.
6. Denver Nuggets - Still much of the same for the Nuggets. Perhaps with the return of Coach Karl, the Nuggets could regain higher positioning in the West. However, nothing has changed with their team. Al Harrington will provide some additional bench scoring.
7. San Antonio Spurs - Tim Duncan won't allow this team to fall out of playoff contention. Despite getting older, the Spurs will still be a solid team. Perhaps they can improve with better continuity and the addition of Tiago Splitter from Euroball. However, Phoenix absolutely destroyed these guys in the playoffs last season and causes me to think... they could be done.
8. Houston Rockets - The Rockets will be the deepest team in the NBA. From player 1-12, they're very solid. With a healthy Yao, Houston could actually rise up to #4 or #5. Scola, Martin, Battier and Ariza will keep them in contention without Yao.
Phoenix - On first thought, losing Amare will be devastating to the Suns. Who will they play in the post? However, on second thought, Turkoglu, Childress, and Warrick were solid additions. This was a deep and talented team to begin with. Even without Amare, Phoenix could sneak into the playoffs.
New Orleans - The Hornets still have Chris Paul
LA Clippers - The Clipshow could easily rise from the ashes. They could be the most improved team from last year. Blake Griffin will make a huge difference.
Memphis - This team has improved over the summer. With a few breaks, the Griz could outlast another injury prone team for a playoff spot.
Sacramento - Youth. The team of the future.
Minnesota - A long ways to go...
Golden State - A longer ways to go...
Monday, July 19, 2010
PROPS FOR HAYWARD: Jazz newcomer Gordon Hayward was rated as the No. 1 rookie in summer-league play in the online Courtside Analyst's last data-based rankings (as of July 15).
Two players with NBA experience — third-year Memphis center Joey Dorsey and Denver sophomore Ty Lawson — ranked ahead of Hayward overall.
But the Jazz's No. 9 pick in last month's draft was rated ahead of the likes of top pick John Wall (10th), Evan Turner (9th), DeMarcus Cousins (5th), Wesley Johnson (13th) and Derrick Favors (15th) in the rankings that factor in a variety of statistics and results.
"The best rookie so far has been Utah's Gordon Hayward," wrote the author, tywill33. "He was exceptional in the Orlando Summer League."
Thursday, July 15, 2010
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Sunday, July 11, 2010
Saturday, July 10, 2010
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
Thursday, July 1, 2010
One of those players signed was Jeremy Evans of Western Kentucky. Evans will participate with the Rookie Team and was our 2nd Round draft pick this summer. If you're asking... "Who the blazes is Jeremy Evans?", then you're not the only one wondering. I've never heard of the guy. And I'm supposedly the "Draft Guru". Frankly, I remember watching him play once in the Sweet 16 with Courtney Lee, a couple of years back. I'm amazed we drafted him. He must have left an amazing impression on Jazz brass. Apparently, Evans is an athletic marvel... yet skinny (196 lbs) and under-developed for a 4-year senior. His numbers were very underwhelming... 10 pts, 7 boards, and 1.8 blocks per game. Perhaps he can prove us wrong during the Summer League.
I'm intrigued to follow our Jazz participants this summer. Of those who could potentially surprise are Jermareo Davidson, Paul Harris, and Tyrese Rice. Davidson possesses the requisite size, athleticism and length to play on the interior for the Jazz (6'10", 230). He had a solid career at Alabama and found opportunities to play in the NBA for Golden State and Charlotte. Harris nearly made the team last fall despite having ankle problems. He's a tremendous rebounder and defender for a guard (very similar to Othyus Jeffers). Rice can shoot and run a team. He's got great instincts at the point guard position. We'll have to see if anyone can replicate the success of one past summer league star, Wesley Matthews.
In this environment, I believe Sundiata Gaines and Othyus Jeffers ought to shine. They have the hunger, staying power and experience to prove they belong. Both guys put up awesome numbers at the D-League level against similar type of competition. It'll be interesting to see what our boy, Tadija Dragicevic, will do. I expect us to bring home the Summer League championship trophy this year, because we've got the tools and we've got the talent (It's Miller-time!). Anything less would be uncivilized...err...disappointing.
Go Rookies! Go Jazz!
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
Boozer's time has arrived to become a free agent again and plenty of teams offer him the chance to score a big-time contract. Who will Boozer be "screaming" for next season? Do the Jazz have a shot at securing his services for more seasons? We should soon find out.
Stays With The Jazz: 25% Chance
I still think there may be a small chance Boozer remains with the Jazz. However, we'd have to do some serious re-tooling of the roster to fit him into the equation. We only have $10M to spend until we hit the luxury tax threshold again. That's a tight spending limit! Boozer alone will be asking for $15M per season.
Signs with Chicago: 20% Chance
Chicago likes Boozer. They've got two spots available. However, LeBron, Bosh, JJ, and possibly Amare' could sign there instead.
Signs with Miami: 15% Chance
Miami is looking to add the tri-fecta of Bron, Bosh, and DWade. Wade is almost assuredly staying in Miami. Bosh has been the primary target in South Beach. However, Boozer could be a secondary option depending on where Bosh lands (Chicago or Miami).
Signs with NJ: 25% Chance
This is the ultimate back-up plan for Boozer. NJ is opening room for 2 big-time free agents. If Miami and Chicago are taken by Amare' and Bosh. Boozer will most likely land in NJ to play alongside Brook Lopez.
Sign & Trade to Orlando or Detroit: 10% Chance
Orlando could be a real possibility. Dwight Howard has expressed interest in having a power forward running mate. Boozer would be that guy. This would be the best scenario for the Jazz too (unless he stayed) we could recoup some talent in return... perhaps Gortat, Bass, future pick. Detroit is a long shot.
Signs with NY: 3% Chance
New York would rather sign David Lee, if they lost out on Bron, Bosh, Wade, Amare', etc. I think Amare' has a chance to land in New York with possibly Joe Johnson (if that happens... then Boozer lands in Chicago or Miami).
Signs with Washington or LA Clippers: 2% Chance
Washington has been savvy, stealing players from teams trying to unload salary for the free agent market (Hinrich & Yi). Boozer is not needed in the Capital City. LAC has a guy by the name of Blake Griffin.
Friday, June 25, 2010
Thursday, June 24, 2010
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
Invitations have gone out to those participants who will occupy the Green Room at the NBA Draft. They include: John Wall, Evan Turner, Wesley Johnson, Derrick Favors, DeMarcus Cousins, Greg Monroe, Ed Davis, Al-Farouq Aminu, Cole Aldrich, Luke Babbitt, Gordon Hayward, Ekpe Udoh, Paul George, Patrick Patterson, and Xavier Henry. Nearly all of these players could be considered and selected by the Jazz.
The player getting the most buzz for the Jazz pick is Luke Babbitt from Nevada. Apparently, the Jazz would enjoy getting a sweet shooting swingman to come in and play right away. Babbitt, Hayward, and Henry are getting serious looks.
Of the big guys around, if Ed Davis slipped to the Jazz at #9, then he could definitely be the selection. The other big guys being considered are Ekpe Udoh and Cole Aldrich.
Who do you think the Jazz will pick? The draft machine can help us create the potential scenario.
The Jazz could have opportunities to acquire an additional 1st Round pick if they so desire. Mid-1st Round picks are traded quite frequently. Chicago and Miami might want to save cap space for the free agent market, while Minnesota, Memphis, and Oklahoma City have an abundance of picks to possibly trade along to the Jazz. We'll see what happens...
Thursday, June 17, 2010
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Thursday, June 10, 2010
The Big Board (I think the wings are making a surge upward):
1. Greg Monroe, Georgetown
2a. Gordon Hayward, Butler
2b. Luke Babbitt, Nevada
2c. Xavier Henry, Kansas
5. Ekpe Udoh, Baylor
6. Cole Aldrich, Kansas
7. Patrick Patterson, Kentucky
8. Hassan Whiteside, Marshall
9. Ed Davis, UNC
10. Paul George, Fresno St.
On the eve of our World Cup match against England, here's to our 2nd Round hopeful from the Mother Country... Ryan Richards. He could be a potential sleeper.
Tuesday, June 8, 2010
So, the lesson here is that solid ball players can be mined in the 2nd Round and developed into good players. If there was ever a magic formula to selecting one of these players, it would have to be that they were overlooked, upper-class, productive college performers playing with a chip on their shoulder to perform at the highest level. With the right opportunity (like Wes Matthews), these guys can make an impact. The Jazz system also allows these players to thrive based upon the concept of team basketball. Everybody can find a niche if they work hard enough.
Who should we look for?
The Top 5
1. Luke Harangody, F, Notre Dame
The Gody needs us more than we need him. He'd be perfect in our system as a Harpring-esque, "bully & bruiser" type of player. He just fits our style. I don't think he impacts the NBA... unless he's a Jazzman.
2. Mikhail Torrance, G, Alabama
No one had really heard of him until the Portsmouth Tournament. He's a productive senior combo-guard with good athleticism.
3. Lazar Hayward, F, Marquette
Hayward could be the heir apparent to Wes Matthews. Same school, similar-type player, good shooter, physical presence... He'd be a solid forward in the Jazz system.
4. Manny Harris, G, Michigan
Manny does a little bit of everything. He's a stat-sheet stuffer. I believe he could play back-up SG as a poorman's Rip Hamilton.
5. Omar Samhan, C, Saint Mary's
The Sandman took his team to the Sweet 16. His numbers were incredible. With a little conditioning and athletic training, he could definitely be a solid back-up center for us.
The Younger Brothers: Ryan Thompson, G, Rider; Elijah Millsap, G, UAB
If you take a flyer on a guy in the 2nd Round, it may as well be on someone who comes from quality NBA stock. Jason Thompson and Paul Millsap are doing pretty well in the league right now.
The Unknown: Ever heard of Mac Koshwal? Neither have I. He averaged 16 points, 10 boards, 2 assists, 2 steals and 1 block per game as a 6-10 center for DePaul. Get on it!
The Dukies: While I don't cheer for Duke (infact... I despise them), I respect their program and tradition (and more so now that I have visited Cameron Indoor recently). One reason why Duke players perform so well is because they play hard together and assume player roles. Zoubek and Sheyer were solid system guys. Zoubek rebounded and clogged the paint. Sheyer ran the team and shot threes. Both guys have a shot at the NBA. Frankly, there's no better match for the Jazz than two solid winners. We might as well draft one of them.
The Prediction: Jazz pick a Dukie. If we go big in the 1st, it'll be Sheyer in the 2nd. If we go swingman, we'll then select Zoubek.
Friday, June 4, 2010
Monday, May 31, 2010
The big winner of the Draft Day Combine measurements was Luke Babbitt from Nevada. Babbitt measured in at a legit 6'9" in shoes, jumped a 37 inch vertical and ran the sprints and slide drills with quickness. Babbitt also shot efficiently in the shooting drills. Now... this shouldn't be a huge surpise to people since Babbitt averaged 22 ppg, 9 rpg and shot 50% from the floor and 42% from 3pt last season for the Wolfpack (My only concern: Why didn't they win more games at Nevada?). Babbitt showed that he's more than just a solid prospect... He could definitely be a consideration at #9.
In height and wingspan, Greg Monroe, Ekpe Udoh and Ed Davis all measured with great length... (the lacking "buzzword" characteristic for our current bigmen). Monroe could even play a legit center at his height of 6'11". Hassan Whiteside was ridiculous. He had a 7'7" wingspan. Cole Aldrich measured shorter than advertised, even though he showed solid wingspan and good athletic prowess in other areas.
A lot of solid potential choices ought to be available to the Jazz at #9.
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Remember the 2008 draft? Along with my elation at picking Kosta Kofous, the Jazz also provided some laughs by drafting two Europeans in the second round. Here is what the taller of the continent's prospects has been up to lately.
Actually, people are taking notice of Tomic. He's still skinnier and paler than anything Utah County ever produced, but he has some real basketball skills. Whether those are NBA-level skills is another question.
Sunday, May 23, 2010
Thursday, May 20, 2010
Ross Siler from the SL Tribune makes an interesting observation. Wesley Matthews could be looking at a big pay-day this summer after taking over the starting SG spot as an undrafted rookie. Because Matthews has only played one season with the Jazz, we don't own his Bird-rights. And if we have any desire to resign him this summer (as we do) as a restricted free-agent, we'll have to utilize our mid-level or bi-annual exception to keep him. Competitors vying for Matthews signature will be able to sign him only up to the average NBA salary (mid-level), meaning the Jazz can match up to that point based upon the past Gilbert Arenas rule.
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
1. The outfit - This is likely the best outfit ever worn to the NBA draft, and that is saying a hell of a lot. The reason "Mail's" outfit beats out other top picks is the earnestness with which Karl rocks his knitted-tie-with-overstuffed-pants look. He's not trying to impress his boys, he's just wearing what he would wear to church.
2. The tears - Who knew that Malone was always a softie?
3. The shout-out to Monica: his fiancee. Whoops!
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
My Way Too Early NBA Draft Prediction:
1. Wizards John Wall, G, Kentucky
2. 76ers Evan Turner, G, Ohio State
3. NJ Nets Derrick Favors, F, Georgia Tech
4. T-wolves Wesley Johnson, F, Syracuse
5. Kings DeMarcus Cousins, C, Kentucky
6. Warriors Al-Farouq Aminu, F, Wake Forest
7. Pistons Greg Monroe, F, Georgetown
8. Clippers Ekpe Udoh, F, Baylor
9. JAZZ COLE ALDRICH, C, KANSAS
10. Pacers Gordon Hayward, F, Butler
11. Hornets Ed Davis, F, North Carolina
12. Grizzlies Luke Babbit, F, Nevada
13. Raptors Hassan Whiteside, C, Marshall
14. Rockets Patrick Patterson, F, Kentucky
Nicknames are already being considered for the bigman in the middle...
Saturday, May 15, 2010
However, there won't be much Jazz news until the draft picks up steam. So, to get us through the next few weeks, I'll be posting some Jazz-related videos for you purists.
Today's submission: The Mailman's first NBA appearance. Karl doesn't exactly light the world on fire, but it is fun to remember back to the mid-1980s Jazz. I was actually shocked by how bad the teams look in that video. Lots of bad shots, errant passes, terrible ball-handlers, etc. As usual, Stockton is the exception to the rule: calm, collected, heady, and in-control.
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
Thursday, May 6, 2010
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
Monday, May 3, 2010
Sunday, May 2, 2010
As we prepare for a our imminent showdown with the Lakers, let there be no doubt in anyone's mind who Snoop -- an LA native -- is cheering for in this series. Long Beach, Compton, Inglewood always up to no good. . . these are words that mean nothing to the D-O-double G-Y D-O-double G you see.