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2011 NBA Offseason: Utah Jazz

Draft Grades, Offseason Needs, Free Agents

Written by Paul Banks of the Washington Times, David Kay and Peter Christian of the The Sports Bank. Send Paul an e-mail here: paulb05 AT hotmail DOT com.
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Utah Jazz (Last Year: 39-43)

2011 NBA Draft Team Grade:

The Jazz are not in a re-building mode but they are trying to transition from the Deron Williams era. This NBA Draft gave them the opportunity to find some upgrades, and that is exactly what they accomplished. Enes Kanter is a potential franchise center and gives the Jazz great depth up front. He and Derrick Favors could end up being a dominant frontcourt duo one day. Alec Burks and Gordon Hayward combine to form the wing duo of the future. Utah certainly made the most of their draft night. (Team Grade: LOVE IT!)

Live 2011 NBA Draft Grades:

3. Enes Kanter, C, Kentucky
The Jazz absolutely made the right choice in taking Kanter over Brandon Knight even though they already have quality depth in their frontcourt. Knight was not worthy of the third-overall pick while Kanter is a potential franchise center. (Pick Grade: LOVE IT!)

12. Alec Burks, SG, Colorado
Maybe it is a blessing that Jimmer was off the board here because Utah needed an up-grade on the wing and found one in Burks. He and Gordon Hayward give the Jazz a promising young duo at the two and three. (Pick Grade: Makes sense)

*** 2011 NBA Offseason Needs and Free Agents listed below this comment box. ***

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Rosa 01-05-2014 04:02 am (total posts: 1)
1     1

I love Sandra's blog, I really do. But I also love how evnoyree is rushing to defend and console Sandra rather than the Native Americans/Indians who have been/may have been offended by this. Here's a good quote for this: "But seriously, shouldn't the estimation of whether such acts constitute an honorable, respectful "tribute" be left to the supposed honorees?"
@Harry 06-15-2013 10:56 pm (total posts: 2)
6     9

Stern would've vetoed that fast than you can say "bounty"
Pelicans fan 06-13-2013 01:57 pm (total posts: 2)
8     10

I have a solution for Walt's listed needs
PG:go for Brandon Jennings
SG:go for OJ Mayo
PF/C depth:draft Tony Mitchell and a project center
BRANDO 06-19-2012 04:51 pm (total posts: 1)
19     15

I hate to say it, but we need to trade at least Milsap. We also need to sign a point guard to push Harris to play at high level consistantly. Hopefully we get a couple of decent 2/3's in the offseason as well. All the young guys should improve tremendously over the summer. Keep Carroll for sure though.
Chyna 09-27-2011 06:20 pm (total posts: 1)
22     23

Gee willirkes, that's such a great post!
jason 09-12-2011 11:44 am (total posts: 1)
32     59

trade milly to toronto, jefferson to cavs for there 2012 first round draft.
harry15 06-29-2011 02:45 pm (total posts: 1)
33     27

how about trading
Devin Harris(he's not really a franchise point guard)
Big Al
Paul Millsap to the hornets for Cp3 and Emeka Okafor
Jazz get a top five point guard and a Good Young Center
Hornets have their frontcourt set and an Okay point guard, possibly a couple of draft picks.
jlee1533 06-27-2011 05:11 pm (total posts: 1)
26     28

Sorry Jake, but that's a terrible trade for the Jazz. Why is everyone wanting to get rid of one of the bigs now? Did people say that about the Lakers when they had Pau, Bynum, and Odom?
Okur - Trade
AK47 - Cut
Fez - FA...don't resign
Elson - FA...don't resign
The frontcourt could be Big Al, Kanter, Millsap, and Evans. Use the Okur trade to go out and get a shooter.
Jake 06-24-2011 07:50 am (total posts: 1)
27     48

Millsap to Detroit for Hamilton and some change.
Sean 06-23-2011 09:06 pm (total posts: 1)
26     27

Utah now has one of the best young cores in the league, and if they can turn their veteran bigs (Or any veteran players, really) into a PG, their lineup could be something else in a few years.

Burcs, Hayward, Favors and Kanter... How many other teams have that much young talent?
Daniel 06-23-2011 08:48 pm (total posts: 2)
24     26

Gonna have rookie and second year players that start at the 2, 3, 4, and 5 spots.

Presuming Burks wins the starting spot over Bell
Daniel 06-23-2011 07:59 pm (total posts: 2)
28     26

The question is what do the Miami Heat have that we would want for Okur?

Possibly Chalmers and Mike Miller?
The Sex Cannon 06-23-2011 07:53 pm (total posts: 1)
25     26

Chuck Norris + Jesus Christ = Enes Kanter
Mike 06-23-2011 06:55 pm (total posts: 1)
29     28

With Kanter, Jefferson, Okur, Favors, and Millsap (I also think Jeremy Evans has some value off the bench) in the frontcourt, the Jazz have to pull off a trade or 2 to free up some rotation time for the young guys. Okur is in the last year of his deal, so I could see his expiring contract shipped out. Favors is the future at 4, so Millsap is the next most likely to be traded.
Walter 06-21-2011 05:20 pm (total posts: 1)
25     27

First comment... we're going to have comment boards like this all over the site soon. We're still working out the kinks, so this is not the finished product.

2010-11 Season Summary:
The 2010-11 season brought a changing of the guard to Utah - times two. After 21 years with the Jazz, Jerry Sloan, the longest tenured head coach in the league, unexpectedly stepped down after leading the Jazz to a 31-23 record. From there, things quickly went downhill as Utah finished with a 9-20 mark to the end the season under Sloan's replacement, Tyrone Corbin, and missing out on the postseason.

That slide also occurred after Utah dealt their superstar point guard Deron Williams to the Nets for Devin Harris, Derrick Favors and a 2011 first-round pick. The trade was surprising to most but the Jazz chose to get solid value for Williams rather than risk losing him via free agency next summer and getting nothing in return. Harris proved to be a capable replacement at the point although he did not do anything to cement his status as the long-term solution to replace Williams.

Favors was solid once he arrived in Salt Lake City, providing the Jazz with needed depth up front since Mehmet Okur missed all but 13 games due to injury. In his first season with Utah, Al Jefferson combined with Paul Millsap to form a productive though somewhat undersized front line.

What really hurt the Jazz was their inconsistencies on the wing. Andrei Kirilenko and Raja Bell form a defensive-minded duo and looked well past their prime when they were healthy. C.J. Miles posted a career high in scoring but struggled shooting the ball while first-round pick Gordon Hayward was unable to find a steady spot in the rotation until late in the season when he showed promise of being the small forward of the future.

Now the Jazz enter the offseason with uncertainty. Corbin will try to create his stamp on the franchise that now lacks a true go-to player. A pair of lottery picks in the draft should help out but will not be lone answer to what Utah needs to return to the postseason.

2011-12 Projected Depth Chart:

C: Al Jefferson/Mehmet Okur

PF: Paul Millsap/Derrick Favors

SF: Gordon Hayward/Jeremy Evans

SG: Raja Bell/C.J. Miles

PG: Devin Harris

NBA Free Agents:

F-Andrei Kirilenko (UFA)

PG-Earl Watson (UFA)

PG-Ronnie Price (UFA)

F/C-Kyrylo Fesenko (UFA)

C-Francisco Elson (UFA)

Offseason Transactions:

Jazz pick up team option on G/F C.J. Miles

2010-11 Team Salary: Approximately $55.6 million

NBA Offseason Needs:

1. Wing Help: Gordon Hayward came on strong at the end of the season and should make a bigger impact next year. But with Andrei Kirilenko a free agent, C.J. Miles entering the final year of his deal, and Raja Bell turning 35 years old before the season begins, Utah could use additional talent on the wing. They could ideally look to add two wing players - one who can shoot the ball from deep and someone who can replace AK47's versatility on the defensive end.

2. Backup Point Guard: Earl Watson and Ronnie Price shared the backup point guard duties last season but are both free agents this summer. Most speculation points toward the Jazz selecting Brandon Knight with their third-overall pick in the 2011 NBA Draft which would fill this void while also adding a scorer who could play alongside Harris at times. If Utah chooses to go in a different direction with that pick, they should look to add a point with the 12th overall selection or via free agency.

3. Center: Big Al, Millsap, Favors and Okur give the Jazz good frontcourt depth especially if Favors makes strides in his second season. Still, Utah could use a true big man who can replace what free agents Francisco Elson and Kyrylo Fesenko brought to the team last season as insurance since Okur is in the final year of his contract and coming off an injury-riddled season. Plus, none of the current bigs bring a true defensive presence to the middle.

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