Written by Spencer | 28 May 2012

29 teams and 29 trades PART IPART II
It is not often that you get a 10,000 word post, especially about the Utah Jazz. Peter does a fantastic job with this post. It also kept the conversation going. You can follow Peter on twitter to argue or agree with any of the trades. 

Are old-school Jazz the blueprint for Popovich's Spurs? BY Jim Burton 

Yes, Yes they are. Take two great players (Malone and Stockton), add a pretty good third player(Hornacek, Bailey) and then sprinkle in guys that play their role when asked upon. It is very easy to see the similarty between the current Spurs "model" and the Jazz model from 85-99. The only difference is that we ran into Michael Jordan, that is it. 


Cohen: Some Proposed Deals That Seem to Make Sense Follow Josh Cohen on Twitter 

While it’s generally unwarranted to insinuate a team has “excess” size, in Utah’s case, it may actually be true.

As currently constructed, the Jazz have to be creative in finding ways to spread minutes around to Al Jefferson, Paul Millsap, Derrick Favors and Enes Kanter. 

While all that depth down low helped Utah advance to the playoffs this season, its glaring flaw is perimeter deficiency. The Jazz just simply do not have a player who can score in isolation and persistently attack the rim. They also lack outside shooting. 

Joe Johnson, who some argue is one of the more overpaid players in the league after signing that mega contract in 2010, would solve all these problems. 

In spite of some statistical reduction the past two seasons, Johnson remains one of the elite shooting guards in the NBA. 

The Hawks, on the other hand, would probably love to exterminate the nearly $90 million remaining on Johnson’s deal from their own payroll. 

Utah’s Jefferson, who enjoyed a very productive 2011-12 season, is about to enter the final year of his contract worth $15 million. The Jazz have to decide if they are willing to make Big Al their franchise player or shift their attention to helping Kanter and Favors blossom. 

Jefferson would give Atlanta tremendous size up front and would offer the Hawks financial flexibility next summer. Pairing Jefferson with Al Horford in the paint would be very menacing in an undersized Eastern Conference. 

Recently, Raja Bell blasted Utah head coach Tyrone Corbin by describing him as “unprofessional” and called the relationship irreparable. It would only make sense for Bell to be included in this proposed deal to match up the incoming salaries.

We all know that Raja is done, we have been saying it on the podcast for months, but do we want to take on the rest of Johnson's contract. I think a lot of what we do trade wise depends on whether or not we finalize a deal with GS not to move up. 

Sixers "fans" want Kanter A lineup of Harris, Hayward, and Iggy would be a fantastic. 

NBA All Defensive Snubs: Knick Fans Should Rejoice

I don't agree with this one. 

Sunday Syncopation From SLCDUNK's Amar. 

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Written by Spencer | 25 May 2012

Fundamentally Flawed and Finding Fixes

I Got 29 Trade Proposals, but all the Jazz Need is 1



Part II – Playoff Team Trade Proposals    

Part I Can Be Found HERE 

What follows below is a list of potential trades made with both the Jazz team needs and objectives and the counterparties needs and objectives kept in mind.  I am cognizant of the fact that my opinion on what teams’ need and want to do is highly subjective, but hopefully this exercise will give Jazz fans an idea of what type of moves might be available to help the team improve.  The types of trades you’ll read below are both large and small, as sometimes it is the small roster moves that can provide a team with the extra variable it was missing.

For the purposes of cutting this already long article short, we broke it into two parts.  What follows below is a trade proposal between the Jazz and each playoff team, organized from worst to best.  Part I of this article featured a trade proposal from each non-playoff team from best to worst (LINK).  I also outlined some of the Jazz’s prime assets to use when making a trade this offseason, so please refer back to that article for more detail on the Jazz’s major trade used below.  In parenthesis next to each player is the reported remaining year(s) and salary on each players’ current contract.

Philadelphia 76ers

The Trade:  Philadelphia trades Andre Iguodala (2yrs $14.7m, $15.9m early termination option “ETO”) to

Utah for Al Jefferson (1 yr $15m).

Why Philadelphia Does It: Sixers fans have been trying to push Iguodala out the door for several seasons as they believe he has not lived up to his large contract.  Jazz fans have been pining for a perimeter defender who can stop other teams from hitting so many open three’s against their team.  This trade proposal is nothing new for Jazz fans as it seems to make so much sense for both sides.  While Iguodala has been the heart of the Sixers during this playoff run, they were just barely a playoff qualifier and really got some luck with injuries in order to advance to round two.  Jefferson brings a consistent low post scoring option that the Sixers thought they were getting when they acquired Brand.  If they re-sign Spencer Hawes and Lavoy Allen, the team would have a solid frontcourt rotation for the next several years.  This trade also opens up minutes and bigger roles for Thaddeus Young and Evan Turner, two players the Sixers have invested considerable resources in.

Why Utah Does It: Iguodala put up his best shooting year from the three point line this year, averaging nearly 40%.  While that may prove to become an anomaly, the Jazz have to at least consider taking the risk that Iguodala could keep up that shooting touch, or something close to it.  Even if he is not a great offensive player, Iguodala is a good rebounder from the small forward position and has the ability to match up defensively on an opposing team’s best offensive wing player.  The Jazz may be reluctant to pay $30m for two years of Iguodala, but with his ETO it is possible he would opt out after next season and test the free agent waters.  While he isn’t likely to obtain another contract paying $15m a season, he and his agent may decide a low eight-figured salary over four seasons is preferable and the Jazz would hold his bird rights in order to submit a competitive offer.

Who Says No: The only thing preventing this trade is each respective front office having emotional ties to their own player and his place on the roster.  This trade really should have happened last year.

Dallas Mavericks

The Trade:  Dallas trades Shawn Marion (2yrs $8.4m, $9.1m ETO); Roddy Beaubois (1yr $2.2m, $3.3m qualifying offer “Q/O”) and up to $3m in cash considerations to

Utah for Raja Bell (1yr $3.5m).  Utah would have to use $8.4m of the TPE to consummate this trade.

Why Dallas Does It: Every NBA fan knows by now that the Mavericks are in hot pursuit of Deron Williams.  While the Mavericks were hoping to pursue Dwight Howard as well, that ship appears to have sailed since Dallas does not have the trade chips necessary to convince Orlando to ship him to them.  In order to entice Williams to come to Dallas they will need to improve their core beyond 34 year old Dirk Nowitzki.  With this trade, and by Amnestying Brendan Haywood, the Mavericks would have additional salary cap space to pursue another high end free agent this offseason to help lure Williams to the Dallas.  With a revamped core many of the older veterans on Dallas’s roster may consider re-signing for veteran minimum contracts in order to make another title run.

Why Utah Does It: Marion recently turned 34 and put up a surprisingly productive season doing the things he has always done best, playing defense and rebounding.  Those are two skill sets the Jazz could certainly use upgrades on at the small forward position, even if they have to overpay Marion for the next two seasons.  Beaubois has not progressed much over his career to date, but he still can provide a spark plug of energy off the bench and is signed to a relatively affordable contract.  The Jazz would have a year to evaluate if he could develop into more than a bit producer in Utah, and if not they could pass on him in restricted free agency before 2013-14.

Who Says No: It is probably too big of a risk that Marion keeps up his current level of production into the next two seasons, so the Jazz would likely continue to shop for better uses of their TPE.

New York Knicks

The Trade:   New York trades Amare Stoudemire (3yrs $20m, $21.7m, $23.4m) and sign and trades Jeremy Lin (Estimated 4yrs $25m total) to

Utah for Al Jefferson (1 yr $15m); Devin Harris (1yr $8.5m); and Raja Bell (1yr $3.5m)

Why New York Does It: New York had a tumultuous season on and off the basketball court, which might have proven that their current big three of Carmelo Anthony, Stoudemire and Tyson Chandler are not good enough to realistically compete for a championship.  Unfortunately for them, they are hamstrung with Stoudemire’s contract, which makes it nearly impossible for them to make any significant moves to upgrade their roster over the next three seasons.  This trade enables them to deal what many say is an untradeable contract, due to the lack of insurance provisions covering Stoudemire.  In order to entice a team to take that contract they will have to part with Lin who had spurts of outstanding play mixed in with turnover prone basketball.  New York may also be willing to move Lin as it is debatable if he and Melo are an ideal basketball pairing.  At this point the production the Knicks receive from Harris and Jefferson may be equal to or better than what they get from Stoudemire and Lin.  If it doesn’t work out, then this trade would get the Knicks within striking distance of the cap space they would need to pursue Melo’s good friend Chris Paul after next season.

Why Utah Does It: This trade may help lure Steve Nash to Utah and give the Jazz a real opportunity to compete for a title sooner rather than later.  Even if Nash doesn’t come, Lin could be the Jazz’s future at the point guard position and his affordable contract makes the latter two years of Stoudemire more bearable.  The acquisitions of Lin and Stoudemire would likely lead to the Jazz returning to more pick and roll sets, which may be ideal for the reamining players on the team after this trade.  Finally, this move would not severely impair the Jazz’s ability to extend contract extensions to Favors and Hayward, even with the latter two inflated years of Stoudemire’s contract.

Who Says No: This trade is probably the greatest cockamamie scheme I concocted in this article.  Let’s just move on to the next one.

Orlando Magic

The Trade:   Orlando signs and trades Ryan Anderson (Estimated 4yrs $40-45m total) and J.J. Reddick (1yr $6.2m) to

Utah for Al Jefferson (1yr $15m) and Alec Burks (3yrs $2.1m, $2.2m, $3.0m, $4.2m Q/O)

Why Orlando Does It: Orlando isn’t doing anything until they decide whether Dwight Howard is staying or going.  It appears for the moment that even after ownership cleaned house, that Howard is still intent on demanding a trade.  If that is the case, this trade helps Orlando rebuild by trading away two players that were heavily reliant on the defensive pressure that Howard commanded.  In return the Magic get a low post scoring presence to replace Howard and a wing player who has the ability to create his own shot.

Why Utah Does It: If Utah’s biggest need was outside shooting, this trade fulfilled that need with room to spare.  While Anderson is likely the beneficiary of a great outside looks as the result of attention paid to Howard, the Jazz would hope they could replicate that situation with Favors and Millsap.  This would give the Jazz a real inside out game in the frontcourt.  Additionally, while Reddick isn’t the all around player and does not have the potential that Burks does, he does have the ability to spread the floor from the shooting guard position and would likely start next to Hayward.

Who Says No: Orlando may be content on rebuilding around Anderson and whatever big man it gets back for Howard (Brook Lopez? Andrew Bynum?).  Until they know what’s going on with Dwight, this trade idea would clearly be secondary consideration.

Denver Nuggets

The Trade:   Denver trades Al Harrington (3yrs $6.8m, $7.1m, $7.6m, years 2&3 are only partially guaranteed) and the #20 pick in the 2012 NBA draft to

Utah for future 2nd round draft considerations. Utah would have to use $6.8m of the TPE to consummate this trade.

Why Denver Does It: Denver had a surprisingly successful season and has proven itself to be one of the deepest teams in the league even though they do not have any real stand out stars.  As a result, Denver has spent much of the post-Melo era extending mid- to high-seven figure contract extensions to its young core.  On tap this offseason, is a restricted free agent contract for Javele McGee and a contract extension for Ty Lawson that would go into effect the following year.  Accordingly, the Nuggets do not have many open roster spots and will be pushing the luxury tax in a few years unless they cut payroll.  This trade frees up some future cap space that they’ll need to retain their core guys.

Why Utah Does It: Utah may have use for Harrington as he has proven to be a streaky bench scorer with the ability to put in minutes at both forward positions and center.  While his salary does not match his production at this point of his career, he does have above average outside shooting abilities that the Jazz currently do not get from any of their other big men.  This trade also gives the Jazz a draft pick to address the team’s needs at point guard or on the wing.

Who Says No: In order to get back in the draft, Utah is paying about $21.5m  in salary to Harrington (or as little as $14.15 if they buy him out early), a price that his average production and advanced age probably doesn’t justify at this time.

Boston Celtics

The Trade:   Boston trades Rajon Rondo (3yrs $11m, 11.9m, $12.9m) and Brandon Bass (1yr $4.3m P/O) to

Utah for Paul Millsap (1yr $8.5m); Enes Kanter (3yrs $4.3m, $4.5m, $5.7m, $7.5m Q/O); and Alec Burks (3yrs $2.1m, $2.2m, $3.0m, $4.2m Q/O).

Why Boston Does It: Boston will enter this offseason in a rebuilding mode after Kevin Garnett’s and Ray Allen’s contracts expire at the end of their current playoff run.  While Danny Ainge has toyed with making big moves in the past, it would appear that he may be ready to move on completely into the next era.  That could make Rondo available, despite his outstanding season.  In this deal Ainge gets a borderline all-star power forward, a young center with massive girth and a shooting guard with the ability to get to the rim.  This move will make a lot more sense if Boston is able use its cap space to sign one of the available all-star free agent point guards, either Deron Williams or Steve Nash.  With those moves, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen may be willing to return to Boston and chase another ring for a discounted price, with Paul Pierce still there to round out their starting lineup.

Why Utah Does It: Since trading away its all-star point guard, Utah’s biggest need has been…well….an all-star point guard.  The Jazz had initially hoped Harris would be competent at the position, but the initial year and a half of results have been less than impressive.  Rondo is a different point guard than Deron Williams to be sure, but his up-tempo game and distribution skills may make him the perfect match with Favors and Hayward long-term.  Jazz fans may scoff that the price is too high, but consider that Utah is paying less then the Nets paid when they acquired Williams.

Who Says No: Depending on what Boston plans to do this offseason, Rondo may be the sole major piece left of its championship roster, accordingly they may feel compelled to keep him for the time being.

Atlanta hawks

The Trade:   Atlanta trades Marvin Williams (2yrs $8.3m, $7.5 ETO); Zaza Pachulia (1yr $5.2m) and #23 pick in the 2012 NBA draft to

Utah for Raja Bell (1yr $3.5m). Utah would have to use $8.3m of the TPE to consummate this trade.

Why Atlanta Does It: Atlanta will struggle to get below the luxury tax line each year it has a major financial commitment to Joe Johnson, Josh Smith and Al Horford.  While the Hawks have fairly routinely made the playoffs, they have not been considered true title contenders.  This trade will clear up some room to operate under the luxury tax and enable Atlanta to be able to afford to re-sign Smith long-term after this year.  While the Hawks may be reluctant to give up two role players that have contributed to their success, this trade opens up about $10m in breathing room for them to make upgrades on the roster elsewhere.

Why Utah Does It: Williams has never lived up to the hype of the 2nd overall draft pick, but he shot a surprising 39% from the three point line this year and by all accounts is a willing defender.  The Jazz have a history of trying similar high draft pick reclamation projects like when they acquired Donyell Marshall and Danny Manning.  Pachulia may not have much of a role on this Jazz team, but he is a bigger body that can give you spot minutes in certain matchups and has plenty of experience as a starter.

Who Says No: I think the Hawks would jump at the chance to trade Williams into the Jazz’s TPE, and this trade works without Zaza or Raja included, but I think O’Connor will hold out hope he can get more for his value than this.

Los Angeles Clippers

The Trade:   Los Angeles trades Eric Bledsoe (2yrs $1.7m, $2.6m, $3.7m Q/O) to

Utah for Alec Burks (3yrs $2.1m, $2.2m, $3.0m, $4.2m Q/O)

Why Los Angeles Does It: Los Angeles is in a tricky situation where Chris Paul is only locked into the team for one more season.  While Paul may decide his pairing with Blake Griffin gives him the best title opportunity, the team will likely need to make some moves this offseason to convince him that this is the place for him to be.  Chauncey Billups appears to be planning on returning to the Clippers and the odds that Mo Williams opts out of his contract are probably about 50/50.  That leaves the team with an extra combo guard in Eric Bledose, and the need to find a long-term solution at shooting guard.  Burks gives the Clippers more size on the wings and someone who can get to the hole with ease.  Both Burks and Bledsoe have high NBA potential, but both have decent bust potential as well.

Why Utah Does It: While the Jazz have to be encouraged by what they got from Burks this year, it is hard to ignore the things that Bledsoe did in the playoffs.  At times he looks like he can dominant a game physically from the point guard position, much in the way Russell Westbrook does.  At other times he looks like he will never be able to take care of the ball well enough to be a lead guard.  This trade may give the Jazz their long-term answer at point guard, but at the very least they have a combo guard that can help score off the bench, which may be Burk’s ceiling as well.

Who Says No:  O’Connor, because even if Bledsoe becomes an outstanding point guard, he may not be the ideal fit for the Jazz at the position.

Memphis Grizzlies

The Trade:   Memphis trades Rudy Gay (3yrs $16.4m, $17.9m, $19.3m P/O) to

Utah for Paul Millsap (1yr $8.5m) and Raja Bell (1yr $3.5m).

Why Memphis Does It: With all of Memphis’s contract extensions over the past few years, they are going to be butting against the luxury tax line for several seasons to come.  This from a team that didn’t make it out of the first round of the playoffs this year.  This trade alleviates about $5m in cap space which may allow Memphis to re-sign OJ Mayo to a reasonable contract and give him the role that Gay had previously held on the team.  Additionally, Memphis was weak along the frontline after Darrell Arthur got hurt, and this gives the team a very good 3-big man rotation of Zach Randolph, Marc Gasol and Millsap. This trade also gives Memphis insurance at power forward, in case Randolph never returns to his pre-injury form.

Why Utah Does It: While Gay is set to make far more than his production is worth, the Jazz are in a cap position where they could absorb his contract into the framework of the overall budget and not have to worry about an inability to extend any of our young guys.  Since his sophomore season in the NBA, Gay has fairly consistently averaged 19 ppg, 5.5 rpg on 35% three point shooting.  Gay can also play spot minutes at power forward to fill in for some of the minutes lost with the Millsap’s departure.

Who Says No: Gay’s contract would give O’Connor heartburn, but ultimately I think Memphis will probably let Mayo walk instead and try to cut costs elsewhere.

Los Angeles Lakers

The Trade:   Los Angeles trades Pau Gasol (2yrs $19m, $19.3m) and Steve Blake (2yrs $4m, $4m) to

Utah for Paul Millsap (1yr $8.5m); Devin Harris (1yr $8.5m); and Raja Bell (1yr $3.5m).

Why Los Angeles Does It: Los Angeles is running out of time with the Kobe Bryant era.  Additionally, the team has some serious salary cap restrictions that prevent it from making any significant changes to the team going forward, unless they find a way to shed salary.  If the Lakers cannot make a trade for Dwight Howard or Deron Williams this offseason, they may try to focus on building around Andrew Bynum and Bryant for one or two more title runs.  This trade gives them a younger and more versatile power forward to play with Bynum and gives them a serviceable point guard in Harris that will allow them to let Ramon Sessions walk after his disappointing playoff run.  With all three of the acquired contracts expiring after next season, the Lakers will be in better position to make tweaks going forward.

Why Utah Does It: For Utah this is about putting a better center next to Favors and allowing him to grow into the team’s franchise guy more gradually.  Gasol is still a very crafty scorer and might be better off without having to guard quicker power forwards on defense.  If the Jazz made this trade they’d also want to find a deal for Jefferson, as those three post players would not be an ideal fit.  Ideally, they’d get a point guard back in return.

Who Says No: Jazz fans would never want to send a beloved player such as Millsap to the enemy, but they won’t have to worry about it because Los Angeles will think they can get more for Gasol.

Indiana Pacers

The Trade:   Indiana trades Danny Granger (2yrs $13.1m, $14.0m) and Darren Collison (1yr $2.3m, $3.3m Q/O) to

Utah for Paul Millsap (1yr $8.5m) and Earl Watson (1yr $2m)

Why Indiana Does It: Indiana is in the middle of a deep playoff run and even finished the season with the third best record in the east.  Such success would lead one to believe that they would not be looking at making a lot of offseason moves, but in fact Indiana is at a bit of a crossroads as both Roy Hibbert and George Hill are eligible for extensions to their rookie contracts this offseason.  This trade frees up about $3.5m in cap space for Indiana and with the cap holds for Hilbert and Hill they would still have room to pursue Eric Gordon, Goran Dragic and/or Jamal Crawford in free agency.  This trade also allows Indiana to move Paul George to his more natural small forward position and gives the Pacers a deep group of big guys with Hibbert, David West and Millsap.  Both Millsap and West will be free agents the following year and the Pacers could decide to bring back one or both of them.

Why Utah Does It: Danny Granger at $13m a year is not as valuable as Millsap at $8.5m, but this trade helps the Jazz diversify its roster and brings a former borderline all-star player at the small forward position.  Granger is a career 38.5% three-point shooter, who will help spread the floor with the Jazz.  Additionally, Collison has had stints in New Orleans and Indiana when he appears to be prepared to take over the starting point guard position on a team.  In Utah he would compete with Devin Harris for that starting spot and potentialy provide a future answer for that position beyond 2012-13.

Who Says No: Indiana is taking the risk here that they’ll be able to fill in for the loss of Granger using their cap space in free agency.  If they aren’t confident in their ability to do so, they’ll probably pass on this trade for now.

Miami Heat

The Trade:   Miami trades Mike Miller (3yrs $5.8m, $6.2m, $6.6m P/O); Norris Cole (3yrs $1.1m, $1.1m, $2.0m, $3.0m Q/O); and cash considerations (Up to $3m) to

Utah for Raja Bell (1yr $3.5m) and Earl Watson (1yr $2m).

Why Miami Does It: Many of the Heat’s free agent acquisitions after Lebron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh have been a failure.  Perhaps the biggest one being Mike Miller who is eating a significant amount of their cap space for three more seasons.  Due to the luxury tax and general ineffectiveness in his role, the Heat will likely be looking for a taker for Miller’s contract this offseason, unless they just choose to Amnesty him.  Bell and Watson don’t represent upgrades for the Heat and there would be a good chance each is bought out.  This is a financially motivated transaction to free up cash flow in future years to find pieces that work better with Miami’s core.

Why Utah Does It: Utah may actually have some use for Miller who shot 45.3% from the three-point line this year, but they wouldn’t be happy with his salary.  Utah is also making this trade to take a look at Cole, who has put up some decent games when he has gotten an opportunity to play in Miami.  Cole will only be a 2nd year player next season and has room to grow into a lead point guard, or settle into a role playing combo guard off the bench.  In any event his roughly $4m total salary in the next 3 years is affordable for the production he provides and helps to compensate for the Jazz having to overpay Miller.

Who Says No: The Jazz may have had more interest in Miller 1 or 2 years ago, but he is probably too far past his prime to commit to his 3 year contract even with the Cole sweetener.

Oklahoma City Thunder

The Trade:   Oklahoma City trades Kendrick Perkins (3yrs $7.8m, $8.5m, $9.2m) and Eric Maynor (1yr $2.3m, $3.4m Q/O) to

Utah for Devin Harris (1yr $8.5m).

Why Oklahoma City Does It: By now every NBA observer agrees that James Harden is playing himself into a max or near max contract extension offer.  Serge Ibaka has played well enough that he is looking at an eight-figure contract extension as well.  Add those future contractual obligations to Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook’s maximum deals and Oklahoma City will have somewhere between $55m-$60m tied up in those four key players for the 2013-14 season.  At that amount, it almost becomes a necessity for the Thunder to trade Perkins away to avoid an eight figure luxury tax bill in 2013-14 and 2014-15.  With this trade, the Thunder obtain the salary cap flexibility to be able to keep Harden and Ibaka.  Additionally, Harris is still good enough to give solid back-up minutes at point guard and shooting guard for the Thunder and would be a rotational player in their attempts to win a championship in 2012-13.  The loss of Perkins hurts the team defensively, but the Thunder would look to free agency to find a more affordable replacement.

Why Utah Does It: This is the reverse Matt Harpring trade for the Jazz, as they would be reacquiring Eric Maynor, with whom they reluctantly parted with in order to avoid luxury tax penalties previously.  Maynor had a significant knee injury this past year, so his health status will play a big part of this transaction, but his prior play had some professional commentators questioning whether the Thunder would be better off starting Maynor instead of Westbrook.  The Jazz will obligate themselves in this trade to three years of Perkins, who has never exactly filled up a stat sheet.  Rather, Perkin’s impact on title contending teams has been in the small things he does on the basketball court.  Perkins would start next to Favors until Kanter eases his way into the lineup and gives us one of the better defensive frontcourts in the league.  Also, if you are a fan of the Jazz trading for Rajon Rondo as well, he and Perkins are reportedly really close from their time spent together in Boston.

Who Says No: Oklahoma City is so close to a title that they may be willing to pay significant luxury tax penalties to achieve one, thus I think they will be reluctant to trade Perkins away at this time.

Chicago Bulls

The Trade:   Chicago trades Kyle Korver (1yr $5m, only partially guaranteed to $500,000) to

Utah for future 2nd round draft considerations.  Utah would have to use $5m of the TPE to consummate this trade.

Why Chicago Does It: Chicago enters the 2012-13 season with roughly 10 guys under contract for close to $76m.  Without filling their final 3 roster spots, the Bulls are already in luxury tax territory.  The team may be in a situation where they feel they cannot afford to bring Korver back in his current role at his current cost.  While they could buy out the remaining portion of Korver’s contract for $500,000 (a number that is compounded if the Bulls are paying the Luxury Tax), they may be able to find a team like the Jazz who wish to acquire him and thus eliminate all financial obligations they would have otherwise had to pay.  In this scenario the Bulls hope that Rip Hamilton stays healthy next season and provide the production they received from Korver.

Why Utah Does It: By all accounts, Korver’s last stint in Utah was successful as he did what he was brought in to do, hit three-pointers in a limited bench role.  He then hit free agency at a time when the Jazz just could not afford to extend him a marketable contract offer.  Two seasons later and Korver is still able to shoot the three-ball and the Jazz have still not found a consistent deep threat.  Korver is only owed $5m total for one season under his current contract and could provide the team with floor spacing, without tying the team’s hands financially into the future.

Who Says No: O’Connor was fine with letting Korver walk before and may not have that much interest in bringing him back due to his advanced age.  I’d imagine the Jazz look for younger options instead.

San Antonio Spurs

The Trade:   San Antonio trades Tiago Splitter (1 yr $3.9m total, $4.9m Q/O) and Stephen Jackson (1 yr $10m) to

Utah for Paul Millsap (1 yr $8.5m) and Raja Bell (1 yr $3.5m).

Why San Antonio Does It: San Antonio is playing as well as anybody right now and it is hard to see them wanting to make any significant roster changes to their current team.  At the same time Tim Duncan is 36 years old and a free agent this offseason and by all accounts should be re-signing a multi-year extension with the team at the conclusion of the year.  Father time will eventually catch up to Duncan and the Spurs will have no choice but to start to rely on secondary options.  That is where Millsap may be appealing to the Spurs.  Millsap is the type of player that can mold himself to the Spurs need at any given time, playing inside or outside as needed.  Dejuan Blair may have been all set to take over that role previously, but his minutes have fallen off in recent times and he is coming up on free agency himself and the Spurs may be reluctant to pay him with so much other money locked into Duncan, Parker and Ginobli.  A big bonus to this trade is eliminating the financial obligation they owe to Jackson in 2012-13.

Why Utah Does It: Splitter is surprisingly 1 month older than Millsap, and he has had far less success in the NBA to date.  While a benefit of Millsap’s game is his versatility, Splitter is more of a defender with length who puts up points at a high percentage but doesn’t score in bulk.  Going forward, Splitter may more of an ideal pairing with Favors and allow Favors to guard the opposition’s smaller frontcourt player, which will allow him to conserve energy on defense.  Jackson would almost certainly be an upgrade over Bell for the Jazz but his days as an NBA starter are probably over.  The Jazz would look forward to his contract running out at the end of the upcoming season.

Who Says No: I’m guessing the Jazz would rather commit long-term to Millsap as a known commodity, but a pairing of Favors and Splitter has to at least be a bit intriguing to the Jazz.

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Written by Spencer | 22 May 2012

I forget sometimes how much Jerry Sloan worked the refs for certain calls. This video also reminds of how much I hate Bill Walton. BTW the coachin carousel has started. Sloan's name will be in every conversation. Plan on it. 

I don't know when this video was taken. It was uploaded a couple of days ago, so my thinking is that this is Kanter working out over the past week or so. I know this is a video cut but his shot looks much better than full game speed. 

Stan Van Gund or Tyrone Corbin... 
Cougarboards are like devil's playground...without all the dirty pictures. 

Breaking Down 2011-2012's Top Executives. 

5 – Kevin O’Connor, Utah Jazz

The Jazz this past season surprised many by making the Western Conference playoffs. True, they were swept by the Spurs, but most expected to see them in the lottery again. The problem is none of the major changes impacting Utah’s roster happened during this past season. Deron Williams was traded last season, for Devin Harris, Derrick Favors and the draft pick that became Enes Kanter. Coach Ty Corbin  replaced the legendary Jerry Sloan last season, too. Both first-round picks, Kanter and Alec Burks, combined for 29.1 minutes a game and 11.8 points. Utah did sign a slew of free agents: Josh Howard, Earl Watson, Jamaal Tinsley, DeMarre Carroll and Blake Ahearn. Of that group only Howard averaged more than 4.5 points a game.

Verdict: The Jazz deserve credit for exceeding expectations in 2011-12, but it’s very difficult to attribute the success to the moves of management. We’ll learn more about the Jazz front office in the coming year as they decide what to do with $37.6 million in expiring contracts (Al Jefferson, Paul Millsap, Harris, Watson and Raja Bell).

I think Jason has this spot on. It is hard to give credit to KOC when the moves he made were last year. KOC does deserve some credit for the signing of Carroll (the sneaky team option), Howard, Tinsley, and Watson. Each of those guys won us a game this year.  Follow Jason here.@jfleminghoops

The Downbeat @slcdunk @andyblarsen Looking Forward and Back with KOC, J-Slo, and Burks

Is it possible that Kanter can be as productive as Hibbert. Granted Hibbert got out to bad start, but so has Kanter. Here are there comparibles. I was thinking about thi after the 19.18 game and really think that Kanter could get there. The crazy thing is the rebounds could be there right now given the minutes. Offensively he still needs some work.   

Al Jefferson's Donk Chevy Donk that is... 

 Al Jefferson Chevy Donk

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Written by Spencer | 21 May 2012

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Written by Spencer | 20 May 2012

Utah Jazz Around the Web Weekend Edition.

29 Trades 29 Teams Aftermath.
Peter Novak followed up his epic post 29 trades and 29 teams with an interview on 1320 with Spencer Ryan Hall from SaltCityHoops.
I can’t thank Peter and Spencer enough for the work on this. I have known Peter for about 15 years, very smart and a fabulous critical thinker. Thanks, Peter.

Breaking Down Al Jefferson's Rebound Tactics [Frame by Frame]
Great stuff by Alec Lam. It is safe to say that Al could be getting 20/20’s if he actualy tried to rebound.

Paul Millsap for #6 #11 and Cash. Huh?
I understand the logic behind this argument, but most GMs don’t. No one will value Paul Millsap for a #6 pick, even if his contract is sexy.

Devin Harris TOP 10 in 2011-12 Season 

The NBA's Award-Winning Playoffs From Bill Simmons.
The Herm Edwards "We Can Build On This!" Award for "Things You Can't Actually Build On, Even If You Say You Can Build On Them"
To the precocious Jazz, who unexpectedly barged into the playoffs before getting trounced by the Spurs to the degree that Al Jefferson said that he didn't know if anyone was beating San Antonio this spring … only they hadn't played Game 4 yet. Whoops. By making the playoffs, they also had to give a lottery-protected pick in a deep draft to Minnesota as part of the Jefferson trade from years back. Yes, I'm fighting off the urge to make the "anytime you can give up the 18th pick to get swept by an average of 16 points per game, you have to do it" joke.
(The good news for Jazz fans: David Kahn is making that pick.)

Nancy Lieberman Recognized as One of the Top 40 Female Athletes over the Last 40 Years
Lieberman was ahead of her time, a talent that surely would have starred in the WNBA had it been in existence in the 1980’s. Instead she was limited to playing in the short-lived Women’s Basketball League, and is recognized as the only woman to play in a men’s professional sports league (two seasons in the United States Basketball League). During Lieberman’s time as a professional basketball player, she also played for the LA Lakers and Utah Jazz in the summer leagues. Lieberman did play for the Phoenix Mercury in the WNBA’s inaugural season of 1997 at the age of 39. She returned to play one game with the Detroit Shock at the age of 50 in 2008.

Yes, a woman played for the Utah Jazz summer league team. The Jazz are also the only team to draft a woman in the Draft 1974 I believe.

Paul Millsap Season in Review
Locke is putting together some fantastic stuff. You should all be following and reading along.

Random Off-Season Quotage.
Moni as always....witty.

Gordon Hayward is on the BookFace

Three Point Targets for the Jazz- The diamonds and the Coal
Nash, Novak and Korver are tops on my list. I love Ray Allen, but like Clark says,”We are not on his radar.”

Devin Harris Selling his 2.2 Million Dollar Dallas House.
Unique Mediterranean villa in gated community of Green Park. Grand foyer with walls of glass with view of pool & spa.Study & formal dining room off foyer.Gourmet kitchen viking appliances.Huge family room wall of windows & doors that open to pool area & covered patio with outdoor fireplace.Master suite has see through fireplace to sitting area.Gameroom,media & other bedrooms up balconies that overlook the pool.

Makes sense. The house is ridiculous though. Check out the pictures.

Former Utah Jazz Man Ronnie Price Player Evaluation.

Fake, but still only 20 bucks!

Utah Jazz "Fans" TV spot
One of the best commercials of all time. It’s interesting that Commercial Arts doesn’t like the player voice over. I definitely like the explanation though, It brings the team and the community/fans together.

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Written by Spencer | 18 May 2012

Fundamentally Flawed and Finding Fixes

I Got 29 Trade Proposals, but all the Jazz Need is 1


IF YOU HAVE BEEF HIT UP @Peter_J_Novak on Twitter he is waiting...

The Utah Jazz lockout shortened 2011-12 season came to a close about two weeks ago with a disappointing sweep at the hands of the #1 seeded San Antonio Spurs.  The team had its annual locker cleanout the following day, where it was reported that Jazz Senior Vice President of Basketball Operations Kevin O’Connor told media members in attendance that he didn’t feel the Jazz needed to deal any of its quality big men and that he was perfectly amenable to returning in 2012-13 with the same frontcourt.


Despite O’Connor’s statements, the writing is on the wall for most Jazz fans and local and national media types who see that the Jazz’s greatest strength (their frontcourt depth) is indirectly contributing to the teams greatest weakness (backcourt depth).  This is of course because the NBA operates in a system where each team can only allocate a limited amount of resources to its player salaries, and thus each team must budget its needs within the confines of that system.  Accordingly, if a team dedicates too many resources (draft picks, salaries) to one particular area of its roster (in the Jazz case, the Power Forward position) it will necessarily mean that other positions on the team are underfunded (in the Jazz case, the point guard and wing positions).

Fundamentally Flawed

The Jazz as presently constructed have invested their greatest amount of resources into the power forward position, which includes veterans Al Jefferson ($14 million), Paul Millsap ($6.7m) and young prospects Derrick Favors ($4.4m) and Enes Kanter ($4.13m).  Those four players (out of a total of fifteen) comprised about 52% of the Jazz’s reported 2011-12 total salary cap expenditures (approximately $57m).  While Jefferson and Kanter log most of their minutes at center, an argument could be made that their shorter stature would ideally suit them for the power forward position. Favors logged time at center as well, but he is on record as saying that he sees himself as an NBA power forward.

While having that frontcourt depth is nice and did lead to much of the Jazz’s success this past season, the 2011-12 season taught us that the Jazz still lack proven playmakers at point guard and both wing positions.  Gordon Hayward and Alec Burks have each shown glimpses of potential. Potential that might lead one to believe that both of those guys are future starters on a championship contending team.  At other times they have each failed to make a consistent and necessary impact in games, and neither player has found a consistent three-point stroke in the NBA.  Furthermore, it remains to be seen if either of those guys is ideally suited for the small forward position especially when it comes to defending some of the NBA’s larger small forwards like Kevin Durant or Lebron James.

Perhaps the position that all Jazz fans can agree needs to be addressed this offseason is point guard.  Jazz fans, and no doubt the team, have been let down with Devin Harris’s play since the Jazz acquired him last spring.  Additionally, Harris has an expiring contract that would seem to signal that his time with the Jazz will come to an end next offseason, unless the team finds a way to deal him first.

Finding Fixes


While the Jazz certainly have their holes that need to be addressed, they are not without assets to help them fill their needs.  As the 8th seed in the Western Conference playoffs the Jazz may need just a few tweaks, to go along with current player development that will enable the team to reemerge in the Western Conference’s elite.  To accomplish these needs the Jazz have a number of tools available to them offseason, as follows:


  • Free Agency:  Between committed salaries and various cap holds, the Jazz at present time sit about $4m below the estimated 2012-13 salary cap (approximately $58m).  That does not give the team much room to maneuver and due to some complexities of the cap the Jazz really only have the Non-Taxpayer Mid Level Exception (the “MLE”) to entice a player to sign with them.  This will enable the Jazz to sign a restricted or unrestricted free agent to a four year contract with a maximum salary of $21.35m.  The Jazz could sign lower level free agents and the team could create cap room by making unbalanced trades that would free up salary cap space, but for the time being, if you are pining for the Jazz to sign a free agent, hope that player would be content with a starting salary of $5m per year.


  • Traded Player Exception:  Much has been made of the $10.9m Traded Player Exception (the “TPE”) that the Jazz acquired when they traded Mehmet Okur to the New Jersey Nets prior to last season.  Without getting into too many of the boring details, the TPE allows the Jazz to take back a single or multiple players, either simultaneously or in separate transactions, who have a  salary that is less than $10.9m for the upcoming season.  This tool is especially appealing for teams that have made financial commitments to players that they now want to unload without taking back any salary commitments in return.  In an ideal scenario the Jazz would get serviceable players in a “contract dumping” transaction but in the current NBA environment we are likely looking at taking back overpaid players or a combination of an overpaid player and a worthwhile asset (like draft picks, cash, young inexpensive player).


  • Expiring Contracts:  Another valuable commodity to NBA personnel folks, is expiring contracts.  Similar to the TPE, this allows a team to unload a longer term financial commitment for one that will come off that teams books at the end of the upcoming season.  As a technical matter, every single contract on the Jazz’s books is eligible to be wiped off at the end of the 2012-13 season.  Realistically, though the Jazz will exercise the “team options” they hold and retain their four young first and second year players beyond next season.  Other teams may come calling to the Jazz to swap some of their longer term contracts for those of expiring Jazz players.


  • Talented Basketball Players:  I placed this bullet next to last, as it seems the NBA has shifted over the past decade or so, with the major impetus behind trades in this era being the affect the transaction will have on a teams bottom line or future capacity to spend.  That is why so many trades now seem to be executed with non-equivalent basketball talent.  In this regard the Jazz have a number of talented players that other teams may come calling for.  Millsap is the most productive for his level of salary, but Jefferson and Harris may have value as NBA starters to some teams out there.


  • Andrei Kirilenko:  Kirilenko gets his own special category because his situation is unique.  While Kirilenko had a successful basketball campaign abroad last year, the Jazz still retain his “bird rights” which enable them to offer him a contract of up to 35% of the team’s salary cap.  While nobody expects the Jazz to overpay for Kirilenko (again), the Jazz are in a position to offer Kirilenko more money than he can get elsewhere.  While there would not appear to be room for Kirilenko on the teams present roster, especially considering the fact that Kirilenko’s success in Europe came mostly at the power forward position, any trade the Jazz make for Millsap or Jefferson may free up a spot on the team for a veteran forward with Kirilenko’s skill-set and ability to play both small and power forward.  One last note on Kirilenko, it would appear that due to the “Keith Van Horn” rule, the Jazz will not be able to sign and trade Kirilenko to another team, as he was not with the team for the past season.


Lottery Team Trade Proposals

What follows below is a list of potential trades made with both the Jazz team needs and objectives and the counterparties needs and objectives kept in mind.  I am cognizant of the fact that my opinion on what teams’ need and want to do is highly subjective, but hopefully this exercise will give Jazz fans an idea of what type of moves might be available to help this team improve.  The types of trades you’ll read below are both large and small, as sometimes it is the small roster moves that can provide a team with the extra variable it was missing.


For the purposes of cutting this already long article short, we are breaking it into two parts.  What follows below is a trade proposal between the Jazz and each non-playoff team, organized from best to worst.  Part two of this article will feature a trade proposal from each playoff team from worst to best.  In parenthesis next to each player is the reported remaining year(s) and salary on each players’ current contract.


Houston Rockets

The Trade:  Houston trades Kevin Martin (1yr $12.9m) and Samuel Dalembert (1 yr $6.7m team option “T/O”) to

Utah for Al Jefferson (1 yr $15m).

Why Houston Does It: As evidenced by its attempts to trade for Pau Gasol and sign Nene as a free agent last offseason, Houston is attempting to upgrade its frontcourt options.  While Dalembert was signed to fortify their frontline, he eventually fell out of favor with Kevin McHale and lost minutes to Marcus Camby.  For Houston, trading Martin is as much about freeing up cap space and playing time for Goran Dragic in order to retain him as a free agent this offseason, something Darryl Morey has been very public about wanting to accomplish.  While Dragic primarily plays the PG position, the Rockets have used both he and Kyle Lowry in the backcourt together.

Why Utah Does It: Outside shooting.  I could stop the analysis there as that is the obvious hole that the Jazz are trying to fill in this scenario.  It should be noted that Martin has lost some of his shooting touch over the past couple of seasons and his defense is and always has been questionable.  The Jazz would hope they could cover for that with Hayward and Favors defending around him.  The Dalembert part of the equation is not merely a throw in, as the Jazz could use a big, rim protecting 7-footer to fill in for some of the minutes in the frontline rotation that you lose by trading away Jefferson.  Dalembert is not a long-term solution for the roster but would be good for 20 minutes a night as a defensive specialist and to give Kanter some needed time to develop.

Who Says No: I think this is a pretty fair trade, but ultimately I think O’Connor nixes this one as he values Jefferson higher than the return package here.


Phoenix Suns

The Trade:  Phoenix trades Channing Frye (3yrs $6m, $6.4m, $6.7m player option “P/O”) and Hakim Warrick (2yr

$4.6m, $4.9m) to

Utah for Raja Bell (1yr $3.5m).  Utah would have to use $6m of the TPE to consummate this trade.

Why Phoenix Does It: The Suns by all accounts are ready to amicably part with Steve Nash, which will undoubtedly put them into rebuilding mode.  While the team is rather bare in the backcourt, they do have a glut of average to above average centers and power forwards. It would appear the Suns value Marcin Gortat and Markieff Morris the most going forward, but I have also heard rumblings that they would like to extend Robin Lopez’s contract as well.  This would seem to make both Frye and Warrick expendable, especially when considering their present overinflated salaries.  This trade allows Phoenix to get rid of a couple of longer term contracts to help them enter the rebuilding process sooner.

Why Utah Does It: Frye is a Jazz killer with his deadly outside stroke.  While our frontline seems full now, we don’t currently have a weapon that can hit three-point shots like Frye on the perimeter.  His game would seemingly compliment Jefferson and/or Favors going forward.  Warrick is not wanted, but the inclusion of his salary is what makes the deal more appealing to the Suns and he can give the team spot minutes, as needed.  The Jazz also use this opportunity to unload the 1 year remaining on Bell’s contract.

Who Says No: I think the Suns would nix this one first.  While unloading those contracts would have an appeal to them, unless they need the cap space to make free agent moves this summer, they might just be better off hanging on to those players for now.


Milwaukee Bucks

The Trade:   Milwaukee trades Brandon Jennings (1yr $3.1m, $4.3m qualifying offer “Q/O”); Drew Gooden (3yrs $6.68m, $6.68m, $6.68m); Mike Dunleavy (1yr $3.75m) to

Utah for Al Jefferson (1yr $15m); Alec Burks (3 yrs $2.1m, $2.3m, $3.2m, $4.4m Q/O); and a future conditional 1st round draft pick.

Why Milwaukee Does It: Just a few short months ago Milwaukee put an end to the Andrew Bogut experience.  While they were able to acquire a dynamic backcourt scorer (Monta Ellis) and defensive role playing big man (Ekpe Udoh), they lack any consistent scoring options in the post.  This trade gives them a true inside outside game with Jefferson in the paint and Ellis playing lead guard on the wing.  Additionally, they get a young shooting guard in  Burks who could play opposite Ellis in either guard spot.  Finally, they were able to eliminate Drew Gooden’s onerous contract from their payroll, which will help give them flexibility to free up money to extend Jefferson and/or Ellis at the end of next season, or alternatively rebuild from the ground up.

Why Utah Does It: Utah needs a future point guard and Jennings may be the best available as he and Ellis  has fairly duplicative skill-sets.  Utah may have some concerns about Jennings long-term commitment to Utah after he made some comments which caused some observers to question his commitment to a similar small market franchise such as Milwaukee.  Despite that though, if offered, there is rarely a situation when a young player won’t re-sign a big money contract extension at the end of his rookie contract and the Jazz would hold all the cards for the following two seasons.  Jennings is lightening quick and is still only 22 years old and gives the Jazz someone to grow with its young core.  His game reminds me of a young Tony Parker and similar to Parker he needs to improve his outside shot.  With Jennings and the subtraction of Jefferson, the Jazz would want to open the floor more and become a more up-tempo team.  This may play well into the strengths of Favors and Hayward going forward.  The Jazz also acquire a relatively cheap Dunleavy, who when healthy, can still shoot well enough to help spread the floor at either wing position.  Gooden may be overpaid, but as a 3rd big man he can give the team solid rotational minutes for the next three seasons.

Who Says No: Besides Jazz fans who haven’t seen enough of Jennings play, probably Milwaukee.  While I don’t doubt their need for an upgrade in the post, an Ellis/Jefferson pairing would be brutal on defense and may have a hard time sharing on offense.


Portland Trailblazers

The Trade:   Portland trades Wesley Matthews (3yrs $6.5, $6.8, $7.2) and the 11th overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft to

Utah for Paul Millsap (1yr $7.2m)

Why Portland Does It: Portland has completely blown up their team and will enter the offseason with a ton of cap space and a ton of needs to fill.  The Blazers appear to be focused on building the team around Aldridge and Batum, and thus will have many options to consider once they hire a General Manager.  The Blazers may look to a few different ways to improve their team with veterans or with young players, or perhaps a combination of both.  Millsap would give Aldridge a relatively inexpensive frontline player to team up with and both players have an inside-outside game that could compliment each other well.  Portland would also be clearing Matthews contracts off their books, giving them three solid players to build around along with the 1st round pick they got from the Nets and more cap space to pursue free agents.

Why Utah Does It: Utah makes this move because the power forward position belongs to Favors now and to get into the upcoming draft with the 11th overall pick.  With that pick (and having reacquired Matthews) they would seemingly target filling the need at point guard.  At #11 the Jazz could have a choice of either of the top two point guard prospects, Kendall Marshall and Damian Lillard.   Matthews had a tough end to the 2012 season and he does not appear to be playing up to the lofty contract that Portland gave him.   Perhaps a new home on a familiar team would help him get back on track to the player he was becoming before all the drama unfolded in Portland.

Who Says No: Probably Utah.  O’Connor appears to value his veteran proven commodities over draft picks and he didn’t want to pay that much money for Matthews the last time he had the opportunity.

Minnesota Timberwolves

The Trade:   Minnesota trades Darko Milicic (1yr $5.2m, $5.6m T/O) and the #18  pick in the 2012 NBA draft to

Utah for future 2nd round draft considerations. Utah would have to use $5.2m of the TPE to consummate this trade.

Why Minnesota Does It: By all accounts Minnesota had finally turned things around with the strong positive influence that Ricky Rubio brought to its team.  Unfortunately, Rubio got injured and the team quickly regressed back to its norm.  Despite that, the team should feel confident that it has a decent core in place right now with Love, Pekovic and Derrick Williams forming a solid frontline and Rubio handling the ball distribution duties.  The team would appear to be in a good place to compete if it can get some help at the wing positions.  Considering their current salary cap commitments, Minnesota does not have a lot of money to throw around at free agents.  Enter, the Utah Jazz.  With this trade the Timberwolves free up some cap flexibility to go out and pursue help at the wings trough free agency or trades, perhaps someone like Jamal Crawford who was almost traded their before the trade deadline this past season.

Why Utah Does It: Utah may be interested in getting back into this deep draft, and this is one way for them to dip their toes back in.  While the Jazz wouldn’t have much use for Milicic his contract expires at the end of next season along with the bulk of the Jazz roster, and the Jazz would not lose long-term salary cap flexibility with this trade.  With the 17th pick the Jazz would likely have the option of the 3rd or 4th best point guard prospects, which is likely to be a player like Marquis Teague or Tony Wroten.  Those guys need some time to learn and the Jazz could give them spot duty behind Harris and Watson this season.

Who Says No: Probably Utah.  While O’Connor might want back into the draft, $5.2m for the 17th pick may be a bit too pricey.

Detroit Pistons

The Trade:   Detroit trades Rodney Stuckey (2yr $8.5m, $8.5m partially guaranteed); Charlie Villenueva (2 yr $8.0m, $8.5m P/O); Austin Daye (1yr $2.9m, $4.1m Q/O) and the 9th pick in the 2012 NBA draft to

Utah for Paul Millsap (1yr $8.6m); Devin Harris (1yr $8.5m); and Raja Bell (1yr $3.5m)

Why Detroit Does It: Joe Dumars severely hamstrung the financial flexibility of his team a few years back when he signed Villenueva and Ben Gordon to inflated contracts.  Both have underperformed and the Pistons need help getting out from under them, while also trying to improve the team going forward.  This trade helps them unload the remaining two years owed to Villenueva.  To do so the Pistons will need to include Stuckey who may be expendable with Brandon Knight having a similar style of game and impact on the team.  In return the Pistons will get a solid veteran presence in that locker room in Millsap who will slide right in next to Monroe and alleviate a ton of pressure on Detroit’s promising big man.  Harris and Bell are mostly throw ins to make the contracts work, but both could give the team spot duty that may replicate the production of the guys they are trading away.

Why Utah Does It: Utah would consider this trade as part of its youth movement.  This trade, more than anything would be about acquiring the 9th pick in the draft.  At that spot the Jazz could be in position to land any of the top point guard prospects and some interesting small forward prospects like Perry Jones III and Harrison Barnes, if either drops.  Stuckey is three years younger then Harris and gives you a tad bit better production at relatively the same price.  A new environment and a stable coaching situation may help him realize his full potential. Villenueva is coming off an injury plagued year but has a decent three-point stroke when he hits his spots.  He could help spread the floor at both the forward positions.  Daye is mostly salary cap filler but he has had spurts in his career which make you think he can be a rotational NBA player.  He’d get the chance to earn minutes at the small forward spot.

Who Says No: I think this is close, but O’Connor would probably shoot this down.  Of course if the Warriors drop a spot in the lottery they don’t consider this at all.

Toronto Raptors

The Trade:   Toronto trades Andrea Bargnani (3yrs $10m, $10.75m, $11.5m P/O) to

Utah for Paul Millsap (1 yr $8.6m) and Raja Bell (1yr $3.5m)

Why Toronto Does It: By all accounts Jonas Valanciunas had a highly successful international campaign and has cemented himself as a future hall of famer in the NBA.  While that may be a bit exaggerative, the reports from overseas have been positive, which poses somewhat of a dilemma for Toronto.  While Bargnani is their best player now, they may want to free up playing time for Valanciunas at the center spot.  By trading Millsap for Bargnani, the Raptors get a slightly more successful player who probably fits in better next to their alleged future franchise cornerstone.  As an added bonus Millsap is much cheaper than Bargnani for the time being and this gives the Raptors a chance to try him out before committing to him long-term.

Why Utah Does It: Millsap may be the odd man out in the Jazz’s frontcourt situation.  In order to prevent discontent, it might be wise to trade Millsap now and get value in return.  Bargnani could seemingly come in and pick up where Okur left off, as the sweet shooting stretch big man.  This could open the floor for everybody and a more limited bench role may finally allow Bargnani to stay healthy.  There is some risk here though as Bargnani’s contract is fairly big for the next three seasons and his health hasn’t been the best since he’s been in the league.  Also as an added benefit, the Jazz were able to unload Bell’s contract, but that aspect isn’t key to this trade.

Who Says No: Although I think it makes sense for both teams, I’m guessing both teams say no.  Toronto will likely want to see what it has in Valanciunas before deciding to move on from Bargnani and the Jazz like the flexibility that Millsap’s expiring contract brings.


Golden State Warriors

The Trade:   Golden State trades Dorrell Wright (1yr $4.1m) to

Utah for future 2nd round draft considerations.  Utah would have to use $4.1m of the TPE to consummate this trade.

Why Golden State Does It: Golden State took on a fairly big investment when they acquired Richard Jefferson for Stephen Jackson at the trade deadline.  While Jefferson is not worthy of his current contract status, he did give the team similar production to what they got from Wright.  Since Jefferson’s contract is likely not moveable, this trade allows them to free up some cap space to re-sign Brandon Rush or upgrade their roster elsewhere.

Why Utah Does It: While Wright regressed some last year his 36% 3 point shooting was still better than most of the Jazz team.  This isn’t a big upgrade for the team, but it gives the team an option at SF and doesn’t tie the team’s hands financially long-term.

Who Says No:  O’Connor, but only because Lacob went on the radio discussing private trade conversations.

Brooklyn Nets

The Trade:   Brooklyn trades Anthony Morrow (1yr $4m) and Johan Petro (1yr $3.5m) to

Utah for future 2nd round draft considerations.  Utah would have to use $7.5m of the TPE to consummate this trade.

Why Brooklyn Does It: Much like last season, Brooklyn is in a huge state of flux until it figures out what is happening with Deron Williams and Dwight Howard.  Similar to last year, the Nets are not looking to take on long-term commitments and may in fact be looking to shed salary in order to accommodate a trade for Howard.  This trade helps them get two replacement level players off their roster and the $7.5m they are owed in 2012-13.  It gives them more flexibility to re-sign Williams and Gerald Wallace and accommodate trades with Orlando that requires them to take on some of Orlando’s bad long-term contracts.

Why Utah Does It: Much like Wright, Morrow regressed last year, but is still a decent three-point shooter and could fill in solid minutes at the small forward position for the Jazz.  Petro is also a borderline roster guy, but his salary is affordable and he provides a deep reserve with some length for defensive purposes.  This trade allows the Jazz to try out two potential upgrades with no financial commitment beyond next season.

Who Says No: Dwight Howard.  This ball is all in his court.

Sacramento Kings

The Trade:   Sacramento trades Tyreke Evans (1yr $5.25m, $6.9m Q/O) and Jimmer Freddette (3yrs $2.4m, $2.5m, $3.2m, $4.4m Q/O) to

Utah for Paul Millsap (1yr $8.5m); Alec Burks (3yrs $2.1m, $2.3m, $3.2m, $4.4m Q/O) and a future conditional 1st round draft pick.

Why Sacramento Does It: Sacramento has been stuck in the lottery for quite a while now, but appears to have promise if they can get DeMarcus Cousins head on straight.  Perhaps what they need more than anything in that regard is a change of the supporting cast around him, starting with adding a veteran hard working power forward who could help lead the team on the court.  Millsap’s varied skill set may be a good pairing with Cousins, allowing Cousins to focus on the things he does best.  Additionally, it is no secret that the Kings do not feel that Evans fits into their future plans anymore and Burks may be able to give you 75% of Evans production in limited minutes.  If you add in the 5th pick in the draft and re-signing of Jason Thompson, things may be finally shaping into form for Sacramento.

Why Utah Does It: For Utah this is about taking the risk that Evans can return to his Rookie of the Year form.  While he has not been an overly efficient player he could potentially settle in to the shooting guard position in Utah and lead the team in scoring with Favors and Kanter on his side to hit the offensive glass and clean up the scraps.  The Jazz also acquire Jimmer in this trade, who was somewhat rendered useless by the emergence of Isaiah Thomas in the latter half of the season.  Jimmer may not ever become a starter in the NBA but his ability to shoot would make him a valued commodity off the Jazz bench and in the ticket office.

Who Says No: I think Sacramento might be able to net a bigger haul for Evans, so they’ll hold off on this for now.

New Orleans Hornets

The Trade:   New Orleans trades Emeka Okafor (2yrs $13.5m, $14.5m) and the #10 pick in the 2012 NBA draft to

Utah for Al Jefferson (1yr $15m)

Why New Orleans Does It: As everyone knows by now New Orleans has new ownership that will be eager to turn the team around to fill their arena.  The team will focus on re-signing Eric Gordon this offseason, but other than that virtually everything else on their roster is expendable, starting with finding a taker for the remaining two years of Okafor’s bloated contract.  This trade gives the Hornets more financial flexibility down the road and in the interim gives the team an inside scorer to pair with Gordon.  The team will also have a pick from 1-7 to address other needs, and thus won’t miss the 10th overall pick that badly.

Why Utah Does It: Utah does this trade if they are convinced they really want to get in this draft and aren’t considering re-signing Jefferson next year.  This trade gives the Jazz the ability to acquire a future point guard as discussed in other scenarios above, but also gives the Jazz a rotational big man to work in with Favors and Millsap.  Okafor is on the downside of his career but, so long as his knee checks out, should be able to give the team solid defensive production at the center position.  This frees both Favors and Millsap to play primarily at PF and gives Kanter a few more years to develop.

Who Says No: The price for acquiring the 10th overall pick in this trade is about $13m and I think that may be a little rich for O’Connor’s blood.


Cleveland Cavaliers

The Trade:   Cleveland trades Daniel Gibson (1yr $4.8m) to

Utah for Raja Bell (1yr $3.5m).

Why Cleveland Does It: As we get down to the final few teams it becomes apparent why their rosters weren’t very competitive and makes it difficult to find acquisitions that the Jazz would consider.  This trade may be of interest to the Cavaliers as it saves them about $1.3m and gives them help at the wing where their needs are the greatest.  Irving has a firm stranglehold on the PG position and Gibson doesn’t figure into the long-term plans in Cleveland.

Why Utah Does It: Utah needs to eliminate Bell from their locker room and adding a combo guard with a career 41.6% three point stroke is worth the slight increase in salary they have to take on.  The risk here is Gibson’s health, which is no guarantee.  In order to entice Cleveland further into accepting this deal, the Jazz could contribute cash in this trade, which Cleveland could then use to work out a buyout with Bell.

Who Says No: Cleveland may appreciate the money savings but only if Bell agrees to a buyout or the Jazz take back Gibson within the TPE (another possibility).

Washington Wizards

The Trade:   Washington trades Andray Blatche (3 yrs $7.1m, $7.8m, $8.4m) and Jan Vesely (3yrs $3.3, $3.5, $4.4, $5.9 Q/O) to

Utah for Raja Bell (1 yr $3.5m) and Earl Watson (1 yr $2m).  Utah would have to use $3.3m of the TPE to consummate this trade.

Why Washington Does It: Washington demonstrated at the trade deadline that it recognizes the need to surround John Wall with character guys and unselfish teammates in order to turn their franchise around.  In that regard ridding themselves of Blatche must be high on their offseason “to do” list.  While the amnesty provision is an option, they may still wish to use that on Rashard Lewis (although a buyout for Lewis makes more financial sense).  Washington would not have much use for Bell and Watson beyond bringing in veteran voices into the locker room for the season and then having their contracts come off their books at the end of the year.

Why Utah Does It: This is a risky trade that has two ways it can pay off for the Jazz.  Utah was reportedly high on Vesely in last year’s draft, presumably as a replacement to Kirilenko at the small forward position.  Vesely had a decent, but unspectacular season and he seems destined to become an NBA role player and not a star.  However, a long small forward with athletic ability is something the Jazz do need.  Blatche has good size and has had some success in the NBA when he is focused.  With the Jazz he would be a 3rd/4th big who could provide a scoring and rebounding punch off the bench and give spot starters minutes.  His contract isn’t too out of whack with his production, but it is hard to say where he is mentally at this time.


Who Says No: Even if O’Connor covets Vesely, the $23m still owed to Blatche is probably more risk then he is willing to bear.


Charlotte Bobcats

The Trade:   Charlotte signs and trades D.J. Augustin (Estimated 4yrs $23m total, with T/O in year 4) to

 Utah for Raja Bell (1 yr $3.5m); Earl Watson (1 yr $2m); and future 1st round draft considerations.


Why Charlotte Does It: Finding a workable trade between the Jazz and Bobcats is difficult as Charlotte is likely to only be interested in acquiring future draft considerations or young players off the Jazz roster.  One player that Charlotte does control is restricted free agent Augustin.  The Bobcats drafted Kemba Walker last year and appear to be ready to move on from Augustin and this trade allows them to recoup a future draft pick that they had previously invested into Augustin.


Why Utah Does It: Augustin is a career 37.5% three-point shooter and has had some decent assist totals for Charlotte.  His career to date has been average but it is tough to tell if that is as a result of the lack of talent around him in Charlotte.  This trade allows the Jazz to unload two players they no longer need and take a small risk that Augustin can succeed in a new environment.  While it would save the draft pick if the Jazz signed Augustin to a free agent contract for similar numbers, the chances are that Charlotte would match such a low financial commitment and keep Augustin as an asset to move down the line.


Who Says No: I’m curious to see if O’Connor may have interest in Augustin, because I do think he has Kyle Lowry type breakout potential if he is put in the ideal environment.  I expect the Jazz would only have enough interest to pursue any acquisition of Augustin in free agency though, not via trade.

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Written by Spencer | 17 May 2012

Courtesy of @ProdigyJF 

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Written by Spencer | 17 May 2012

Larry H. Miller Group buying The Zone, hopes to create sports radio ‘powerhouse’

I can guarantee three things out of this deal. First, drama. I know that most of these guys are professionals, but I also know that most radio guys have to have a little ego that needs to be stroked. It comes with the territory. It will be interesting to see who stays, who goes, and where do they go.
Second, with only one pony in town who will they race. I don’t know if you could call it a race, but it will be interesting to get a particular point of view.
ESPN700 just crapped their pants because of an automatic increase in listeners. Channel flippers, commercial switches, and bad topic switches.

Ron Boone @1041straight droppin knowledge like college. Ron played 13 years in the league, he knows his stuff. It doesn’t always come out right, but when given time he has very good and informative.

Blake Ahearn, unknown but incredible!!
I love the guys that post on 360, a lot of the regular writers have started there including: Jimbo Rudding, Diana Allen, David J Smith, Andy B Larsen... Patrick keep it up we appreciate it.

POLL: In 5 years, Enes Kanter will b
It is fun to contemplate the future of our players, I would have to say that Kanter is a solid starter. I don’t think he will ever be a an all star, which is not a big deal to me, but to most fans that will be a failure. What are your thoughts.

Chenelle Represents the Utah Jazz Dancers on the Hottest Cheerleader list from HoopDoctor.com

No Comment Needed. 

Utah Jazz: Fledgling foursome could be future franchise staples
SALT LAKE CITY — Right before the start of the Utah-San Antonio series, TNT analyst Charles Barkley, talking about the Jazz, declared, "That's the best young team in the NBA. From a talent standpoint, they are the best young team. I love their talent."
I think that OKC has, and is, the best young talent in the NBA. I don’t want to take anything away from our guys at all, I just want to be realistic. Our four young players are good, but I only think one of them has a shot at the HOF (Favors). OKC has three future HOF’s Durant is a lock, even if he doesn’t win a ring. Westbrook for sure, but will hold onto Durant’s coat tails.  Harden is a very likely HOF candidate if he plays for ten or so years at his current level. Mind you these are projections without major injuries and a nine to twelve year career.

Bobcats Continue Coach search.... Jerry Sloan comments.

Somewhere a Fanzz employes is saying, “What the Hell?”

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Written by Spencer | 16 May 2012


Team Record Lottery Chances (out of 1,000)
Charlotte 7-59 250
Washington 20-46 199
Cleveland 21-45 138
New Orleans 21-45 137
Sacramento 22-44 76
New Jersey* 22-44 75
Golden State# 23-43 36
Toronto 23-43 35
Detroit 25-41 17
Minnesota (To New Orleans via LA Clippers) 26-40 11
Portland 28-38 8
Milwaukee 31-35 7
Phoenix 33-33 6
Houston 34-32 5

* This pick may be conveyed to Portland.
# This pick may be conveyed to Utah via New Jersey.

The order for the the remainder of the first-round picks is as follows:

15. Philadelphia 35-31
16. New York (To Houston) 36-30
17. Dallas 36-30
18. Utah (To Minnesota) 36-30
19. Orlando 37-29
20. Denver 38-28
21. Boston 39-27
22. LA Clippers (To Boston via OKC) 40-26
23. Atlanta 40-26
24. LA Lakers (To Cleveland) 41-25
25. Memphis 41-25
26. Indiana 42-24
27. Miami 46-20
28. Oklahoma City 47-19
29. Chicago 50-16
30. San Antonio (To Golden State) 50-16


31. Charlotte
32. Washington
33/34. New Orleans (To Cleveland via Miami)
33/34. Cleveland
35/36. New Jersey (To Golden State)
35/36. Sacramento
37/38. Toronto
37/38. Golden State (To Denver via New York)
39. Detroit
40. Minnesota (To Portland via Houston)
41. Portland
42. Milwaukee
43. Phoenix (To Atlanta)
44. Houston (To Detroit)
45. Philadelphia
46. Dallas (To Washington)
47. Utah
48. New York
49. Orlando
50. Denver
51. Boston
52. Atlanta (To Golden State)
53. LA Clippers
54. Memphis (To Philadelphia)
55. LA Lakers (To Dallas)
56. Indiana (To Toronto)
57. Miami (To New Jersey)
58. Oklahoma City (To Minnesota)
59. San Antonio
60. Chicago (To New Jersey via Milwaukee or to LA Lakers via New Jersey and Milwaukee)

*Please note that teams that finished the regular season with identical records will select in the second round in the reverse of the order in which they select in the first round, provided, that if more than two teams are tied, then, as among the tied teams, each tied team will select one position earlier than it selected in the first round, except that the tied team that selected earliest in the first round shall, among the tied teams, select latest in the second round. With respect to the ties between Cleveland and New Orleans (21 and 45); New Jersey and Sacramento (22 and 44); and Golden State and Toronto (23 and 43): since the order of selection in the first round for this set of teams may change based on the results of the Draft Lottery, the order of selection in the second round cannot be determined until after the Draft Lottery is conducted.

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Written by Spencer | 15 May 2012

This Day in Utah Jazz History May 16, 2000
Utah’s Jef Hornacek walked off the court for the final time after the Jazz are eliminated from the postseason by the Portland Trail Blazers. Hornacek, who entered the league as a point guard and ended up one of the game’s best pure shooters, concluded his career after 1,077 career games. He averaged 14.5 points and 4.9 assists per game, with shooting percentages of 49.6% from the field, 40.3% from three-point range and 87.7% from the free throw line.

Who the Hell is Josh Selby?
That’s not the real title, but you know Jody wanted it to be.
I wouldn’t expect anything less from Jody. Tongue and cheek at its best. The great thing about this article is that Jody is calling out the random media member that voted for Josh Shelby. Calling out people for being idiots is ok in my book. Thank you Jody.

Salt City Hoops Podcast with Spencer Ryan Hall and Jackson Rudd.
This is in addition to the Saturday show that airs on 1320 from 11-12. 

N.O.  is added to the Goran Dragic sweepstakes. The Counter Point
So Far we have POR, DAL, NYK, UTA, ORL and now NO that have shown or been hinting at wanting a piece of the Dragon. He played well this season, but with this many teams on his junk his payday is going to be 6-8 million, and possibly even more.

From Hornets247
“But it goes beyond his individual statistics; Dragic also raises his team’s level of play. When Dragic is on the court, the team’s true shooting percentage jumps up a full 3%. This is the result of him getting the ball to the rest of the team in their favorite spots. This is also why his assist percentage jumped over 7% to 34.6% as a starter.”

From ESPN Florida
Goran Dragic, Houston Rockets – Dragic is a bit of an enigma because he hasn’t played a lot in his career. However, during spot time in Phoenix and Kyle Lowry‘s injury last season, Dragic showed flashes of brilliance. The 25-year old wound up starting 28 games this season, finishing with a career-high 11.7 points and 5.3 assists per game while shooting 46.2% from the field and 33.7% from beyond the arc. With Lowry back in the fold, Dragic could be looking for a starting gig.

Mark Eaton still working with youth and doing good everywhere. I respect Mark Eaton for what he has created off the court more than anything he did on the court.  As someone who works with young adults everyday, I think there is an enormous value to good examples. Mark Eaton is being a good example. He continues to do good in the Salt Lake area by giving back. I would imagine that he learned some of these qualaties and attitudes from the late Larry Miller, who gave everything back. 

Jazz Fanatical- Gone Fishing 
@Monlilogue at her finest. 

Andrei Kirilenko is not a Robot!

Paul Shirley talks about Jammal Tinsley in College 

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