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Old 09-30-2013, 12:42 AM   #406
Xiao Yao You
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Default Re: The sure to be epic 2013 Jazz off-season!

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Training Camp Challenge

Earn a roster spot. Justin Holiday's strength lies in his defense. It is no surprise that the Jazz lack strong perimeter defenders. If Justin Holiday can show a knack for defending the perimeter at an above league average level he has a chance to earn a coveted roster spot. His competition will be Scott Machado. While Scott Machado has the inside track on a roster spot because the Utah Jazz point guard depth chart looks like this, the real way to earn a roster spot is by showing the ability to defend. Dennis Lindsey said he wants players who show the "ability to build a defensive foundation ... and guys who are really committed." If Justin wants coveted contract for the 2013 season and a roster spot the spot is his if he can defend better than Scott Machado.

They play different positions. Comes more down to need and who's better.
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Old 09-30-2013, 12:48 AM   #407
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Default Re: The sure to be epic 2013 Jazz off-season!

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Training Camp Challenge

Earn a roster spot and beat out John Lucas III for the backup PG position. The point guard depth chart is still to be determined heading into training camp. The Utah Jazz front office had made it clear that they want a competition to occur for the starting point guard position. The same can be said for the backup point guard situation.

Where did they make it clear? Got to be Burks or Burke starting at the one I'd think though to me Hayward should be the point forward. Clark possibly but he'd be more of a two with Burks at the one I'd imagine. Clark sounds like more of a 6th man type but he might be the best defensively to match up with opposing pg's.

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The backup point guard battle could get muddied with Alec Burks going to Spokane to work on his point guard skills.

Alright! Who else visited Stock?

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Not only will Scott Machado be fighting for that coveted backup point guard position against Lucas III, he will be competing against Alec Burks and, possibly, Ian Clark as well.

As I said with Justin Holiday, in order for Scott Machado to earn a roster spot and compete for the backup PG position he will have to show that he is not only a floor general on the offensive side of the ball but on the defensive side as well. If he can show he can defend NBA-caliber point guards he will earn a spot on this roster. He has the accolades as proof that he can be an exceptional ball distributor, but he will have to prove he can do more than get assists to stick with the Utah Jazz for the remainder of the 2013-2014 season.

He's more of a Sloan type pg. Not sure he fits with this team so much.
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Old 09-30-2013, 12:55 AM   #408
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Default Re: The sure to be epic 2013 Jazz off-season!

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Training Camp Challenge

Jump Andris Biedrins on the depth chart. Rudy Gobert has the toughest training camp challenge. Rudy Gobert is not only competing against Biedrins everyday in camp, he is competing against Ty Corbin's past preference for veteran players.

He might be better off getting big minutes in the D-League but even that might not happen with so many teams sending guys to just a few teams now. He was impressive and appears to be a great fit for Utah. Might be hard to keep him off the floor. He looks to be a better fit than Favors to me.

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Gobert will have to show he can avoid foul trouble, stay his ground against bigger opponents, and is less of an offensive liability than Biedrins.


His screen setting alone probably moves him ahead of Biedrins unless Biedrins returns to form somehow.

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In no world should Rudy Gobert lose a camp battle against Andris Biedrins. This is the same Biedrins who had Festus Ezeli leapfrog him on the depth chart. For reference, Festus Ezeli was the 30th pick in the 2012 NBA Draft. Jeremy Tyler even got some burn to avoid Andris Biedrins making it on to the court. If Rudy Gobert can play at a Festus Ezeli level or higher in training camp he should be the backup center. But, BUT, this is a Tyrone Corbin coached team.

Different teams. Jazz need a vet more than GS did. Biedrins still brings it at the other end and on the boards. Comes down to how much you can live with him at the other end of the court.
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Old 09-30-2013, 01:00 AM   #409
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Default Re: The sure to be epic 2013 Jazz off-season!

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Training Camp Challenge

Seize the starting point guard position and get on the same page as Derrick Favors. Trey Burke must show and prove from day 1 that he is unequivocally the best point guard on the roster. Not by a small margin, but by a wide margin. His competition is John Lucas III, Ian Clark, and Scott Machado.

Alec Burks and really Hayward. They need Burke to be able to score and match up defensively more than to run the team at this stage I'd think.

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He must show he is the man. As Trey goes so do the Utah Jazz. The faster Trey Burke learns the intricacies of the flex offense and how to ready defenses through the lens of the flex the better the Jazz will be. His progression will allow Derrick Favors to blossom and develop and a high rate. Trey Burke has the potential to be a devastating pick and roll point guard. Derrick Favors is a devastating pick and roll power Forward who has spent all summer working with the greatest pick and roll power forward of all time, Karl Malone. These two must think as one by the end of the season or an already difficult season will get a lot harder.

As he goes so do the Jazz? I see no reason to put more pressure on him than he can handle. Hayward and Burks can run the team as he acclimates.
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Old 09-30-2013, 01:10 AM   #410
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More extension talk

I promise not to bore you with too much on the topic of extensions, since I’ve already written a post and done a podcast on Derrick Favors’ and Gordon Hayward’s range, both with the help of SLC Dunk contributor Peter Novak. But David Locke in his 8/22 podcast gave us some new fodder for the conversation.

A lot of people talk as though $12M is pretty much the floor for Favors’ conversation. Locke is looking at it differently, pointing to comps of other promising but non-All-Star bigs who got in the 9-10M range per year. He pretty much seems to view the range as $40-48M over a four year deal, in contrast to others who think the bidding starts at $48M and just goes north from there.

I’m with Locke here. I think based on precedent and based on what we know about Favors today, the Jazz can start negotiating at $40M with a straight face. Not saying that’s where the dollar figure will land, but I don’t think you come out of the gate offering $12M when honestly I think that should be Favors’ ceiling as far as extensions go. As Locke put it, “This is a deal that should get done if everyone’s reasonable here. The only way it doesn’t get done is if Derrick’s crew really believes… that Derrick goes on the open market and gets a max deal.” I just don’t see Favors commanding the max, although a huge leap in playing time and touches in 2013-14 could alter his value in one direction or the other.

10-12 is what I've said all along. It goes above that let him become a FA. He's going to likely get at least that no matter what he does this year on the open market.

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The field

I guess a lot of this comes down to the 2014 market and who will want to spend. I know a lot of teams can create cap space to offer Derrick a 12M+ deal, but I still insist that next year’s free agent market will have some unprecedented weirdness. The confluence of factors (the number of true marquee stars, the new repeater tax, the frenzy around the 2014 draft, etc.) will make next year a nutty free agency period, and I’m not sure a good agent will guarantee his client anything in that type of volatility.

Either way, I thought I’d take a quick look at the 2014 free agent class and imagine where I might rank Hayward and Favors.

First of all, I’m not even sure they rank at the top of the restricted free agent pool. Greg Monroe and Paul George (if they hit restricted free agency at all) will be the prizes there, but DeMarcus Cousins, Greivis Vasquez, Evan Turner, and Eric Bledsoe have all been playing major roles and putting up solid performances, so I’m not sure you could in good conscience put our guys ahead of that group. Even Avery Bradley and Ed Davis have shown flashes but have been similarly hidden behind veteran stars. So far I’d say Hayward and Favors are at best the 5th & 6th sexiest potential RFAs and maybe as low as 9th & 10th. And that’s without leaving the 2009 draft class.

They start sinking farther when we examine the star-studded unrestricted class, starting with LeBron*, Kobe, Tim Duncan*, Dirk Nowitzki, Carmelo* and Dwyane Wade, all undoubtedly ahead of GH and DF on any sane team’s free agent pecking order. Depending on age, health and other factors, you could feasibly add Paul Pierce, Luol Deng, Andrew Bogut, Danny Granger, Pau Gasol, Zach Randolph*, Chris Bosh*, Rudy Gay*, Andrei Kirilenko* and even a revived A’mare Stoudemire* to the top end of the list, although more than likely the fourth year Jazz men will surpass at least a couple of those dudes.

Add those groups together and our guys are probably going to be ranked anywhere from mid teens to late twenties in next year’s free agent market, which has to matter when assessing their extension values. In this year’s free agent crop, a mid-teen free agent was worth an “average annual value” of $7 to 7.5M in Amin Elhassan’s ESPN study, and in the real world the 11-20 group in the same ranking pulled in an average yearly salary of $7M in their new deals. The high man in that group was Monta Ellis ($10M/yr) and the low guy was Kirilenko ($3M). Everyone else was $5-8M per year.

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Tracking Marv

In the same Locke podcast I mentioned earlier, he also gave a cryptic-yet-encouraging update on Jazz swingman Marvin Williams. He said he’d heard good things about Williams’ recovery from knee surgery, saying, “I talked to some people [and] there is some optimism… I think there’s a chance he could be ready November 1 or even training camp.”

That could be great for the Jazz. I have Williams tagged as a guy who could really exceed expectations in 2013-14. There was a lot of hope that his move to Utah would be a welcome change of scenery for Marvin, but as it turns out that was pretty misguided. The JefferJazz offense (which I’ve described as both plodding and anti-slasher) was, we know now, the exact wrong system for Marvin’s skills. But as a part-time 4 and a complement to a more pick-and-roll oriented attack, this could be a good year for Marvin, not to mention for the Jazz as they ponder whether he fits in the future plans.

I also think Williams is underrated as a locker room leader. He was one of the most thoughtful, professional and on-message guys whenever I wandered into the locker room to chat with players last season. His personal struggles probably made it hard to exert himself, but he could be a good mentor to some of the younger players who have to figure out how to lead.

Hopefully he'll be traded to someone else's locker room if he's healthy!
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Old 09-30-2013, 01:17 AM   #411
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Default Re: The sure to be epic 2013 Jazz off-season!

Trade: According to ShamSports.com, the Jazz have $55.87 million in committed salaries (not including Jerel McNeal, who is not guaranteed until October 31). With the salary cap at $58.68 million, Utah has room to sign a nearly $3 million dollar pe ryear player. As they did with the Golden State trade, the Jazz could absorb a player from a team that wants to shed some salary, perhaps picking up another asset along the way. Teams like Miami, Chicago, or the Lakers may want to broker such a deal, thus helping defray a portion of their luxury tax bill. Doing so would give the Jazz short-term help, while adding another pick to Lindsey’s ever-growing stash. You also never know what guys might become available.
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Old 09-30-2013, 01:18 AM   #412
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Default Re: The sure to be epic 2013 Jazz off-season!

1. Paul Millsap wrote a letter to the Jazz organization, thanking them for the last seven years. Here’s what Randy Rigby had to say about it this week:

“We got today, also, a very nice letter. And in fact, my assistant, Judy Adams, said in her 25 years [with the Jazz], it’s the first time ever, she says, we’ve heard people say thank you, but actually Paul Millsap wrote a very nice letter to the Jazz organization saying, ‘You know what? You’ve, over seven years’ time, you’ve done a great thing for me and my family and I want to say thank you for all you’ve meant and all you’ve done for the Utah Jazz.’

And you know what? That was a class act from Paul Millsap. And I really appreciated, you know, the time Paul gave us and the job that he did in Utah.”

What an incredibly classy, incredibly kind move. Paul Millsap was my favorite Jazz player his first six years on the team, and to see him in another uniform this season will be weird. But I’ll have fond memories of him and an even fonder memory of a thoughtful and surprising move here with his letter.
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Old 09-30-2013, 01:38 AM   #413
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Default Re: The sure to be epic 2013 Jazz off-season!

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Gobert will have to show he can avoid foul trouble, stay his ground against bigger opponents, and is less of an offensive liability than Biedrins.
Far out, you'd have to be bloody terrible if you're more of an offensive liability than Biendrins.

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Originally Posted by Xiao Yao You
1. Paul Millsap wrote a letter to the Jazz organization, thanking them for the last seven years. Here’s what Randy Rigby had to say about it this week:

“We got today, also, a very nice letter. And in fact, my assistant, Judy Adams, said in her 25 years [with the Jazz], it’s the first time ever, she says, we’ve heard people say thank you, but actually Paul Millsap wrote a very nice letter to the Jazz organization saying, ‘You know what? You’ve, over seven years’ time, you’ve done a great thing for me and my family and I want to say thank you for all you’ve meant and all you’ve done for the Utah Jazz.’

And you know what? That was a class act from Paul Millsap. And I really appreciated, you know, the time Paul gave us and the job that he did in Utah.”

What an incredibly classy, incredibly kind move. Paul Millsap was my favorite Jazz player his first six years on the team, and to see him in another uniform this season will be weird. But I’ll have fond memories of him and an even fonder memory of a thoughtful and surprising move here with his letter.
That's a cool thing he did.
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Old 09-30-2013, 01:52 AM   #414
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Default Re: The sure to be epic 2013 Jazz off-season!

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Peter: I think we both agree that at this point in time it is difficult to see a scenario where the Jazz offer a full 4 year, $62.3mm maximum extension to either player. When I consider how much either player is worth, I look for recent comparable players/contracts. In Favors’ case I think the Serge Ibaka extension (4 years, $49.3mm) signed last year is rather indicative of what Favors is worth. Both Favors and Ibaka are raw, defensive-focused PFs with room to grow on offense.


Ibaka has proven a lot more. No way should he get that much especially with salaries going down under the new CBA.

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For Hayward, I look at DeMar DeRozan’s extension (4 years, $38mm). While Hayward is a better shooter and more efficient overall, DeRozan has a superior athletic profile which balances out their future NBA prospects. Will either player agree to those type of numbers?

He's a lot better than DeRozan. They'd both be smart to take those deals I'd think. Hayward I see taking the money more than Favors though I could see him holding out for more.

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Considering how conservative the Jazz franchise is historically, I tend to think the Jazz won’t offer that type of money now. Further, I think both players are looking at their anticipated roles this year and could anticipate a work load that will allow them to put up better production than their Ibaka and DeRozan comparisons did. For this reason the players may similarly be hesitant to sign a deal in that range.

It's Lindsey now so we'll see. It's not necessarily conservative. You don't give it to them now you could lose them next year or pay a lot more.

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Dan: The extension prices you quoted probably aren’t way off, although that’s not where the Jazz will start the conversations. The players’ agents might, but I don’t think the Ibaka-Favors comparison will get Favors’ negotiating team very far. Serge was coming off all-defensive first team and a trip to the NBA Finals, the culmination of a run in which he netted an 18.9 Playoff PER. Even still, he got an extension that averaged a little more than 12M/yr with an extra couple million in incentives. I just don’t think Favors is in Ibaka’s league yet, in overall terms, to say nothing of a much different economic market than when Ibaka extended.

Hayward-Derozan, on the other hand, might be in the ballpark. A 4/38M deal is honestly a better deal on the Jazz end than I thought, so if that’s on the table, they might have to take it. But in either case, I think it points back to the salient question about the risk calculation on the part of the players. On one hand, you could take the money now, knowing it might be lower than you could get after a year of number-padding. On the other, you could wait for the chance of a slightly more lucrative payday but risk getting screwed by: the structure of restricted free agency, a market with loads of marquee guys, injury, or just the fact that any shortcomings are going to be magnified when you’re the #1 or #2 option.

Or injury. Who knows if their bodies can hold up to their bigger roles. Favors has some issues already last year.
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Old 09-30-2013, 01:52 AM   #415
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Default Re: The sure to be epic 2013 Jazz off-season!

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Peter: Since we are further apart on Favors, let’s look at 2 additional comps. Joakim Noah and Al Horford. Both signed rookie extensions at 5 years, $60mm. Both of these guys, similar to Ibaka, had established starting roles in year 3, but Favors’ production in his limited minutes isn’t so far off and if you look at per-36 numbers, it is mostly superior. While the Jazz may try to argue that Favors hasn’t met the production levels of any of these guys, his agent can easily point at the team for holding Favors’ minutes down.

In a league where Roy Hibbert and Brook Lopez received maximum contracts as RFA’s, I have hard time seeing Favors having to settle for much lower than $12mm/year. Similarly, Gordon Hayward can look at Nic Batum (4 years, $46mm) and to some extent Eric Gordon (4 years, $58mm) as his potential upside if he plays to Jazz fans’ lofty expectations. Dan, assume for a minute that Favors and Hayward pass on extensions, assuming they remain relatively healthy but only put up average production, what do you think their salary floors are as restricted free agents next year?

Dan: First off, I again think your comps are aggressive. Those guys were already core guys on mostly good teams by the end of year three. I think any extension that is based on that group is one made on the faith of what Favors could become as he takes on more minutes and consistently plays against starter-caliber competition. If the Jazz want to show that kind of faith, they can do so, but I don’t think they’re obligated to based on a comp list of guys who were already doing that at this point in their careers. The reality is that at this point, Favors is not a sure bet to be as good as any of those dudes.

Onto your floor question, I’m just not sure I grant the premise that there IS a floor, at least not once you remove all the conditions you placed on it (relatively healthy, average production). Bad health or subpar production are real risks for either player, so security is the real carrot at the end of the extension stick. You can’t base their extension values on a bunch of hypotheticals that remove the risks inherent in playing 2013-14 without that long-term guarantee, because the whole reward for players signing an extension is foregoing that risk.

What you probably are trying to get at is their RFA value if we took Hayward/Favors now and took them in a time machine to 2014. The answer there, I’m afraid, is just as volatile because there’s really no precedent for the market conditions we’ll have next summer. In a vacuum, I’d say something like 4/32-38M for Hayward and maybe a bit more for Favors (who is less polished all around but gets a big man premium), but we’re not in a vacuum. 2014 free agency will be different from anything we’ve experienced.

Peter: I 100% agree that those are aggressive comparisons for Favors. The Jazz certainly aren’t obligated to pay Favors on those comps, which is ultimately why I think no deal happens this summer. If I’m Favors I’m comfortable that I can merit a similar contract based on the role I am inheriting in 2013-14.

Favors could easily average 15 and 10 on 43% shooting and still get a big contract offer from a big man needy team. In both cases either player could argue below average production was a result of being the 1st year thrust into their role and they are young enough to argue they still have upside.

As an RFA, DeAndre Jordan got 4 years, $43mm coming off a season averaging 7 PPG and 8 RPG. Favors already does that in fewer minutes. JaVale McGee got 4 & $44mm after averaging 11 and 7. Neither of those guys were considered the prospect that Favors is. I have a hard time seeing Favors getting less than $11mm/year next offseason, even if he only adds 4-5 MPG and puts up similar numbers. So is there strong enough motivation for Favors to sign for $11mm/year or less now?

I think we agree that $8mm/year is a reasonable RFA floor for Hayward. We saw way too many average wing players sign for something similar this offseason. Which begs the question, if $8mm/year is the floor, why sign a deal averaging $9.5mm/year now if he has potential to earn $12mm-$15mm year on a 5 year contract if he waits until after the season?

I am curious by what you mean that 2014 free agency will be different from anything we’ve experienced?

Dan: I just think we’ve never seen the confluence of market factors we’ll have next year. Potential free agents include LeBron, Kobe, Melo, Tim, Dwyane, Dirk, Granger and Gay, and joining our guys in the potential RFA class are Paul George, Greg Monroe, Eric Bledsoe, DeMarcus Cousins. As much as half the league has the opportunity to create a near-max salary cap slot, but at the same time the repeater tax kicks in and revenue sharing will have fully kicked in, changing the way big & small market teams spend.

I don’t have any idea how the market will shake out next year; nobody does. So an agent telling his client to pass on, say, 4/38M guaranteed could wind up looking awfully smart… or the bottom could fall out. That’s why I think measuring guaranteed money now against a hypothetical floor in one of the most unprecedentedly weird markets is dangerous for the players; just as measuring against a hypothetical ceiling is usually bad practice for teams.

Let’s say the agents show up with the script you just provided around per-minute numbers and favorable comps, and the Jazz show up expecting a discount for rolling the dice and giving the players the security now without seeing them as alpha dogs first. How likely is it that the parties can’t bridge the gap at all and wind up waiting until next summer just as a result of a negotiating impasse?

Peter: I think there is a very small chance that a Favors deal gets done. As a big man there will almost always be money for him, thus unless the Jazz want to break the bank now (and I don’t think they necessarily should), I’d give it only a 10% chance that he signs. Hayward is probably closer to 30-40%. He has more room to get exposed if he isn’t able to play as efficiently in his new #1 role.

Dan: I think you’re underestimating the motivation to forego restricted free agency based on how hard it is to get paid as RFA. Tiago Splitter – a pretty good comp for present-day Favors, actually – got 4/36M. Jeff Teague, a promising young point guard, got 4/32M. Nik Pekovic was one of the game’s most efficient centers last year and he’s not even signed yet. And all three of those guys were ESPN top 16 free agents; in next year’s star-studded class, neither Favors nor Hayward figures to be ranked that high.

Let’s not forget the ceiling, either. It’s hard for a 22-year-old kid to turn down, for example, $40 million guaranteed for the possibility of Ibaka money or the dream (because, frankly, it’s a dream) of Hibbert money. In other words, I think there’s a middle ground here and I’d put the odds a bit higher than 10-40% for either guy.

We'll know in a month. How they look in pre-season should give all parties a much better feel for what they want to settle at.
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Old 09-30-2013, 01:54 AM   #416
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Default Re: The sure to be epic 2013 Jazz off-season!

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Originally Posted by El Kabong
Far out, you'd have to be bloody terrible if you're more of an offensive liability than Biendrins.


That's a cool thing he did.

Biedrins used to average a double double on 60% plus shooting so it's possible he returns to form.
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Old 09-30-2013, 02:11 AM   #417
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HoopsWorld recently projected that the Jazz will finish next season 15th in the West. That is dead last. While I’m not as convinced as their Senior Writer, Eric Pincus, that the Jazz will be more hapless than Jeff Hornacek’s Phoenix Suns and the Sacramento Kings, I believe Jazz Nation should keep expectations for next year’s team in check, not only in terms of wins and losses but in esthetic of play as well.

Because things will sometimes get ugly.

Here are three indicators why: turnovers, inability to score, and adjustment to new roles.

Turnovers
Based on data from last season, the 2013-2014 Jazz may turn the ball over more than any team in the league.

The Jazz’s vaunted C4—Hayward, Favors, Burks, and Kanter—combined for 10.4 turnovers per 36 minutes of play last season. That’s nearly one turnover more than the entire starting lineup last year per 36.


The bench contributed about six turnovers a game last season, so assume that number stays similar. Add in Trey Burke, who would do well to turn the ball over only three times a game as a starter if asked to play some 30 minutes a night, as seems likely. That means 9 turnovers outside the C4. If we assume the C4 will average 32 minutes a game per player, which is safe given this roster, then they’ll need to cut their combined turnover rate down 24% just to keep the team to 16 combined turnovers a game.

Sixteen turnovers a game would have put the Jazz dead last in the league last season.

Inability to Score
The Jazz just might be the lowest scoring team in the league next season.

Based on production last season, Hayward, Favors, Burks, and Kanter project to score 56 points if each plays 32 minutes. That means to tie last year’s lowest scoring team, the Bulls at 93 points per game, the Jazz would need to get 37 points per game from Trey Burke and the bench.

Brandon Rush’s career high is 9.8 points in 26 minutes per game. Optimistically, say he roars back from injury and provides ten of the needed 37 points in a career year. So the team needs 27 more.

Again using optimism, pencil Burke in for 13 points a game as a rookie, which would be a very fine season. (Deron Williams’s per 36 points his rookie year was 13.5.) The Jazz need 14 more points. Not too hard, right.

With Burks and Burke getting 32 minutes a game each in this hypothetical season, and Rush getting 26, that leaves zero shooting guard minutes and only eight backup minutes at point guard (figuring Burke will take ten of his minutes at the point guard slot). That leaves the following players to score these points at last season’s pace:

Eight minutes for John Lucas III, in which time he should produce 3.6 points.

16 minutes for Marvin Williams/Richard Jefferson: 5 points.

16 min for Jeremy Evans/Marvin Williams: 5.6 points.

16 min for Biedrins/Gobert: 2 points. (It’s not justified by last year’s performance, but they’re simply too big not to get a dunk a game between them.)

Those 16 points put the team over the threshold. In this hypothetical drawn from production last season, the Jazz score better than 93 a game and reach 95. That would have put them 22nd in the league in scoring last season. Not great but not completely horrendous either.

However, this hypothetical assumes: 1) the Jazz suffer no injuries to starters all season; 2) Rush returns to 100% health; 3) the C4 produce at their per 36 pace from last season in spite of jumping up the offensive option list, playing against better defenders, and being heavily scouted by opposing teams; 4) Trey Burke produces better than a young Deron Williams; and 5) Biedrins and Gobert (Biebert!) combine to provide a marginal rather than non-existant offensive option at backup center.

Take any of those assumptions away, and the team starts to really struggle on the offensive end. If starters get hurt, fans will start seeing these substitutions, with the correlated drop in production. Loss of a single starter for any amount of time instantly knocks the Jazz down to cellar-scoring territory. Kicking out any of the other supporting struts would as well. Subtract a few points from a Rush struggling to regain form after ACL surgery. Maybe Trey Burke only plays reasonably well, contributing nine points a game rather than 13. What if one of the C4 struggles with his role, providing a mere two points less than projected from last season’s pace?

It would not take much to dip the Jazz’s projected 95 points per game to match the Bulls’ anemic 93 from last season, or even lower.

In a year when only a point or two a game may separate the Jazz’s maximum talent output from the worst scoring clip in the league, any one of the above complications could make the team stall on the offensive end. It’s far more probable that some problem creeps into the equation than that the season goes without incident.

I think this was written before Clark was signed and he sounds like he could be a pretty good scorer and defender. Burks, Kanter and hopefully Burke need to step it up.

Quote:
Adjustment to New Offensive Roles
Next season’s Jazz are extremely young and relatively inexperienced by any measure. But by the standard of the roles they are being asked to assume, they are practically novices. This is made obvious in the minutes played in those roles last season.

As a point of reference, Al Jefferson played 2,578 minutes last season, every single one as the primary offensive option on the team, and all on top of eight seasons worth of previous experience, most in the same role. Here is how next year’s starters’ experience last season matches up, according to my calculations:

Gordon Hayward, primary offensive option: 243 minutes.*

Derrick Favors, primary post option: About 226 minutes.**

Enes Kanter, primary post option: About 137 minutes.***

Alec Burks, starting shooting guard: 0 minutes.

Trey Burke, starting point guard: 0 minutes.

The collective experience of the starting lineup of this season’s Jazz combines to just over 600 minutes of game play in their likely upcoming roles, or less than one fourth what Al Jefferson racked up last season alone. (Plus, practically all of that was against bench-level competition.)

To put that in perspective, last year’s Rookie of the Year, Damian Lillard, became more experienced at his role than the entire starting lineup of the Jazz will be on opening night sometime in his December 1st, 2012 game against Cleveland, in which he played his 600th minute. He played his first NBA minute Halloween night.

Two months starting for the Blazers gave Lillard more experience at his role than the Jazz’s entire starting lineup brings this season.

Or consider total career starts. Tyrone Corbin’s preferred starting lineup last season of Mo Williams, Randy Foye, Marvin Williams, Paul Millsap, and Al Jefferson have combined to start 1,956 regular season games. Should Corbin start Alec Burks at shooting guard the first game of the upcoming season, the starting lineup will take the floor with 144 combined starts to their name—102 of those belonging to Gordon Hayward. That is 7% of last year’s starters.

Given the Jazz’s young players have such a minimal body of work in the roles they will be asked to play this season, it is all but impossible to predict their production with any degree of certainty—except that there will be some growing pains to endure.

Overall
Put such frequent turnovers and difficulty scoring together, and a team starts to look an awful lot like last season’s Phoenix Suns: 14.9 turnovers and only 95.2 points per game. Now ask how quickly a team as inexperienced as the Jazz is likely to overcome such struggles.

It’s possible that the 2013-2014 Jazz could best the Suns’ futility with something in the range of 16 turnovers and 92 points a game. That would place them as a favorite in the Andrew Wiggins sweepstakes.

Will the Jazz struggle this greatly in these areas next season? I don’t know. But I believe they may. I also believe they may surprise everyone and win as many as 35 games. The truth is, the 2013-2014 Utah Jazz are such a collection of little known and completely unknown variables that is impossible to predict anything with conviction. But such lack of certainty leaves ample room for hope.
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Old 10-01-2013, 12:40 AM   #418
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Default Re: The sure to be epic 2013 Jazz off-season!

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They aren’t in the same conversation, but one thing can be said of Karl Malone and his protégés: They’re on the same page.

Enes Kanter and Derrick Favors are the new Jazz big men, slotted to fill the vacancy left by Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap. That’s a sizable gap. But if you ask a certain big game-hunting hall of famer, they’re All-Star material.

“Without a doubt,” said Malone, who worked out with each during the off-season. “Let’s not smooth over the fact that there are great expectations here. I understand people want to bring them along slowly and they’re not superstars, but let’s not hide behind the fact that these guys are very talented.

“I’ll tell you straight up these guys have the talent to be as good or as great as they want to be.”

But that doesn’t mean there’s any pressure, just because a hall of famer says so.

OK, yes it does.

“I love pressure,” Kanter said, smiling.

“I have confidence in my game,” Favors said.

The Jazz kicked off camp on Monday with their annual media day. It included an assortment of hopefuls and veterans. But this year is different. Although Kanter and Favors are only 21 and 22, respectively, they’re already among the team’s best-known players. In bypassing Millsap and Jefferson, the Jazz gave a vote of confidence to their young low post players. Then the team recruited the Mailman to hone their skills.

No, he wasn’t there to teach them how to skin a bear. He flew to Salt Lake to work with both players and came away impressed and ebullient.

“It’s game time now. These guys have the talent. You might look up and see them getting double-doubles and it surprises everyone, but it won’t surprise me,” Malone said.

The Mailman has never been one to downplay expectations. This is the guy who once said he wanted to be Salt Lake’s mayor if the Jazz won the NBA title. Nor is he one to ignore a player’s work ethic. Remember his outbursts at Greg Ostertag? More than once he labeled the former Jazz center an out-of-shape so-and-so.

Meanwhile, Mr. Two Percent Body Fat never had much tolerance for casual training — and still doesn’t at age 50.

“Right now, I think (Malone) can play 20 minute easy,” Kanter said. “I would hate to play against him. He was just so strong, he was showing a couple moves and … I was like bruised because he was real strong.”

Favors said Malone could play 10-15 minutes “before his knees start hurting.”

Yet to say Malone is browbeating the two young players into climbing Ensign Peak every morning is a misnomer. Malone said conditioning is in the hands of Jazz assistant Mark McKown.

“Mine’s all about court stuff and technique,” Malone said.

In that case, aspiring David Robinsons and Isiah Thomases better look out. There could be some Mail-elbows in the air.

“He taught me some secrets that I cannot say,” Kanter said.

“It was an unbelievable experience just being around him; he’s a Hall of Fame guy,” Favors said. “Everybody know him; he’s Karl Malone. Just those two-three hours spent with him is a moment I’ll never forget.”

Although both are 14 All-Star games away from Malone, he said they have ability he didn’t at that age. Malone was 24 when he made his first All-Star appearance.

“I’m not going to lie. I’m going to say these guys have a skill set that is pretty awesome,” Malone said.

Yeah, but can they bag a wild boar with an arrow?

Coach Tyrone Corbin said he doesn’t like to put specific expectations on players. However, Malone has no such reservations.

“This is go time,” he said. “But I do feel these young men could carry the Utah Jazz franchise. Injuries and things can happen, but there’s no reason these kids can’t carry the franchise for years. I’m talking 10 years.”

No pressure. Really.

Email: rock@desnews.com; Twitter: @therockmonster; Blog: Rockmonster Unplugged

Mailman was better at 21 and 22 I'd say but I guess they could prove me wrong this season.
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Old 10-01-2013, 12:51 AM   #419
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Default Re: The sure to be epic 2013 Jazz off-season!

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Somebody else wore Paul Millsap’s number.


Probably deserves to be retired as much as some that have been.

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Not only are more than half of the players in attendance Monday at media day new to Utah for this season, but there will be an abundance of newness all around the organization.

New schemes, strategies and tactics, according to Lindsey.

New — and lowered for the immediate future — expectations.

already seeing this
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Old 10-01-2013, 12:53 AM   #420
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Default Re: The sure to be epic 2013 Jazz off-season!

Lindsey said he has a “gentleman’s agreement” with the agents of Hayward and Favors to not discuss their deals in public, either. Utah has until the end of October to extend the players’ contracts. If that doesn’t happen, the Jazz have the option of turning them into restricted free agents next offseason.

“As you guys can assume, we’re having active conversations. We’re hopeful,” Lindsey said. “The good news is guys, we’ll (maybe) reach a deal now — that’s what we’re hoping to do. There’s some advantages to that. There’s also some advantages if we can’t reach a deal; we can wait until next year.”

Both sides have to decide which gamble they’d rather make — strike a deal before it’s really known what Favors and Hayward can do with increased opportunities or wait it out until they’ve shown what happens when they’re the go-to guys.
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