Posted by: Steven on April 12th, 2012The author's views are entirely his or her own and may not reflect the views of the Utah Jazz.
One thing we have to remember about this draft (if we get any picks this year with GSW losing frequently and this current Jazz team content to aim for the playoffs), if the Jazz do get some picks we cannot expect that the Jazz will give those player(s) any more playing time next season that Burks or Kanter have gotten this year.
Some franchises give their rookie players big minutes from the outset, others only do so when they are tanking, but that has never been the Jazz way. The Jazz prefer to draft someone and slowly integrate them into the team and system. Its either a deliberate system of “earning their minutes” or a patient approach to training and coaching the young player into the Jazz way of playing but whatever it is whoever is drafted on draft night will not have a big impact on next years team.
We cannot therefore expect any player drafted to impact results significantly next season. They will contribute but only when deemed ready. It does not matter how talented that player will be, or how high the hopes are for a player’s potential they will be brought along slowly. Just as Favors has been, the same with Burks and Kanter, and DWill before them.
At first when I started looking at this years draft class and what the Jazz might decide to take if they they were lucky enough to have two picks in the lottery I was thinking the most obvious need would be a SF and PG. But then last night I thought a little more on how this franchise likes to integrate its rookie players into the Jazz system and I had to think again how that might alter their thinking. If the PG’s in this draft were really good I think they would still choose one to develop over time. However I think this year is particularly loaded with many PG’s to choose from and those that are there are perhaps too one dimensional for the Jazz liking. Lillard seems to be a scoring type of PG who may not fit into the typical Jazz PG model, and Marshall might not be athletic enough. SF is an area that needs to be addressed immediately in the summer with someone who is ready to play and I doubt the Jazz management are going to trust a rookie for that. Especially as there isn’t that many SF’s in this draft where the Jazz are going to be placed in the lottery with a more than one dimensional skillset or have few questions regarding their mentality. There are a lot of Bigs and SGs in this draft which at first glance isn’t what the Jazz would need at this time but then if you start thinking what the Jazz might need not for next season, but the season after that when the player would expect to see more playing time in a Jazz uniform then it starts to make a bit more sense that the Jazz might just decide to go down this route when taking the best player available.
My feeling is this that 4 into 2 does not go, so the Jazz could sound out other teams around the league to see what they may acquire for one our veteran Bigs and the Trade Exception acquired from Okur. If they find a deal to their liking which addresses either the SF or PG position or even both they might just pull the trigger. If for arguments sake Jefferson is the one that is moved on, his hefty contract and the $10million trade exception could get both a SF and PG. That would also have the added benefit of giving Favors more playing time, and Kanter too. It might also make sense for the Jazz to decide to draft another big if that is the best of what’s available. Hang on you say, didn’t you just say that 4 into 2 doesn’t go? Yes I did. But any summer draft pick will not be expected to get big minutes right away, just like Favors and Kanter haven’t. However in such a scenario if it arose those two players are getting promoted with more playing but they won’t be expected to be quite ready yet to carry the burden like Jefferson and Millsap have been expected to this year. Those two players will still be young and learning their craft. So a situation where you have a rookie big, another big with one years experience in Kanter, and a 2 year pro in Favors with either Jefferson or Millsap to compliment them as they grow might just spread the minutes more evenly than a Millsap/Jefferson, Favors/Kanter foursome.
A second draft pick used on SG might not be the obvious choice with Hayward and Burks capable of playing in that position. But Hayward can play either the 3 or the 2, and Burks is naturally a SG just now, but depending on how the Jazz see him developing he might be expected to play PG in future.
So with this reminder on how the Jazz likes to slowly bring along their rookie players does this alter your thinking on who the Jazz might draft. Would you still draft based on today’s need or would you draft on best player available? And what would your choice be if you had 1 pick or two?
Leave a Reply
You must be logged in to post a comment.