The Jazz announced today that Kevin Murphy will be heading to the D-League to play for the Reno BigHorns. This move means the Jazz will have 14 players on the roster and only 13 players who will see any minutes since the Jazz have yet to deal with Raja Bell. Could this be the first step towards a bigger move the Jazz are going to make? Why send Murphy down now?
First of all this is a great thing for Kevin Murphy. Murphy will get playing time instead of sitting the bench on a deep Jazz team who is having a hard enough time finding minutes for players as is. Kevin is a talented player and needs to get playing time so he can possibly be an asset to this team in the future. Not sure if anyone followed this kid in college but here’s a video of his 50 point game while with Tennessee Tech.
50 points in a game is something that can never be overlooked and it shows how much potential this kid has. The good news is that the scoring talent that Kevin Murphy has will not go to waist warming the bench all season and he will get some playing time to hopefully help him fine tune his game.
The question is why now? Why wasn’t Kevin Murphy sent to the D-League sooner? Well one answer might be that Earl Watson is back and so the Jazz feel they have enough guys on the bench that if they got into a situation where tons of guys foul out they have plenty on the bench ready to go. Of course I’m going to dig into this a little deeper though and bring up another possibility. Maybe the Jazz are finally going to make their move that we all assume is coming. As I mentioned earlier Raja Bell is still on the Jazz roster making money for doing nothing but sitting home and thinking of obscene things to say about Coach Corbin to the media. I think every Jazz fan wonders why this guy is still on the roster and why we haven’t come to some kind of agreement to resolve the situation.
One thing I strongly believe in is that the Utah Jazz organization is very very very smart. I don’t think they are dumb enough to pay someone money for no reason at all. I think the Jazz hold on to him because they believe he will be a great chip in a trade the Jazz may make. I could be wrong but adding Raja Bell to an Al Jefferson or Paul Millsap in a trade could be more attractive to a team. I also think that the Jazz are pursuing options to get one of these guys out of Utah to make way for Derrick Favors. The Jazz have been playing basketball for a month now and so teams have seen plenty of both Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap to know what they would be getting this season. We all know from past history from the Jazz that we won’t hear any rumors or have any kind of warning before something happens ala Deron Williams.
My point is that the Jazz have a lot of options and are in position to make a move if they believe it will improve this team. This move sending Kevin Murphy to the D-League could be a sign that the Jazz are making room on the roster to move a player or two. This could be one of those small signs that the wheels are turning in Kevin O’Connor’s head and he’s getting ready to pull the trigger. It’s a hard thing to tell what Jazz management will do since they never let any information leak to the media so all we can do as Jazz fans is speculate and pick up on the little things. This little thing could possibly lead to something big. The main thing to take away is the Jazz know what they’re doing and at least Kevin Murphy will get some time down in Reno.