24 October 2008
The first few paragraphs are a little emotional so if you can't handle it jump down to the green section.
Last night I took my oldest son Noah to his first Utah Jazz game, it was an experience I will never forget. Almost twenty years ago, to the day, my dad took me to me to my first Jazz game. Magic Johnson, Kareem, Stockton and Malone came down to the Marriott Center for an exhibition game, the Jazz won if I recall twelve points or so. I have been lucky enough to have three boys to share my sports passion with, at some point they will have their own kids and hopefully do the same.
I was thinking as we drove to Salt Lake about how kids "pick" their teams. Is it a player they love, respect and admire like Dale Murphy. Is it the first good team they can remember,"Da Bears"? Is it their first Little League team? Is directly correlated to the city or state they grew up in, "Bill Simmons and the Red Sox"? Is it being at the games when magic happens,"BYU"? Or is it a memory they shared with someone important like me and my dad, and Noah and I. I figure it’s probably a mixture of all or some of the above.
Noah will probably not remember tonight, but we did the usual Jazz game ritual. We took the 6th north exit down to Crownburger to park and eat. I got the double cheese plain combo with a strawberry shake. He got the kids cheeseburger plain and we shared the fries and shake.
During pregame he was totally focused on the drink that we got, and didn't focus on the floor till Bear came out on the Harley. I explained to him the flag and why we put our hand over our hearts. I tried to teach him to clap every time we made a basket, this didn't work so well until the second half when we actually started making baskets. He was very good and didn't have a potty or stinky the entire game. I’m sure Stephanie enjoyed the break and we had a good time.
Thoughts on the Jazz after tonight, heading into opening tip. I guess we will see what happens with AK off the bench come Wednesday. Personally I think it is a good call if, that’s a big if, C.J. pulls his crap together on both ends of the floor. He seems a little timid and just kind off lost out there, "I'm starting"? I think the experiment will last no longer than six games, because we have that huge road trip to kick off the season.
Brewer looks and is playing with even more confidence than last year, I'm going to give him 15 pts 4 rbs 3 assists per game this year which is about 20% more than last year. Hopefully he can get his FT% up closer to 80.
Memo is Memo; I think he will be right around the same as last year.
Dwill is Dwill and lets hope the gold medal keeps him hungry for another piece of Jewelry, a title ring.
Our starting five shot over 50% on average per game for the entire year last year, that is pretty incredible.
Korver I guarantee will, between his 3 point shooting and free throw %, win us at least 5-8 games this year. He will play every fourth quarter and get the ball when it is fouling time or when need some big threes.
AK says he is ok with coming of the bench, but we all know he isn't. He wants to go back to Russia where he can be king and use his free pass more often. AK is in a really sticky situation here, he can't complain because his play doesn't back up the selection to be a starter, but he is making a buttload of money and has started for the past five years. This will work itself out and hopefully quickly.
Brevin Knight is Michael Jordan compared to Jason Hart.
Having said this, I still think Price is safe at the back up point and is coming into his own on the pick and roll.
Milsap is solid pretty much all the time and will continue to be.
Harpring is a wildcard. He is our Battier, Klieza, and Vuyacic. I have no problem if he comes of the bench for 15 minutes a game just to piss the crap out of the other teams best player. He is a Sloan kind of guy, not the best athlete, but gives 100% 100% of the time. He is physical and smart when it comes to basketball, I think his body is falling behind a little bit.
Is their any chance that Boozer stays? My gut tells me the Jazz are smart enough to get something while his stock is high, which means this years trade deadline. I have not messed around with the trade calculator yet this year. I may have a guest (Bryce) figure some stuff out and he can post his results or we can have a vote on the best trade options.
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