The draft is over and free agency is here. Despite the initial buzz last night it has been a very slow process. I wonder how much of it hinges on Dwight Howard’s decision? If I had to guess I’d saying at least 75% of it. He’s the big domino that once it falls, everything else will get rolling. As for the Utah Jazz things have been quiet, veeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeery quiet.
Now this should not come as a surprise. Even with the Jazz’s cap space (an estimated almost $30 million before signing Burke & Gobert) they are not first on many people’s lists. In fact they are most likely the 2nd, 3rd, even 4th options for a lot of players. People are aware of the Jazz’s youth movement and many may not want to be a part of a rebuild. They’ll look to go to contenders first. If that doesn’t happen they’ll eventually follow the dollar signs. Jazz fans need to be patient, including myself.
Two players that do have the Jazz first on their list is Randy Foye and DeMarre Carroll. Randy is Utah’s record holder for 3 pointers attempted and made. DeMarre is a hustle player who endeared himself to fans through his play, social media, and actual social gatherings. I fully expect both these players to be back in Jazz uniforms next season. The only signings that could potentially throw that for a loop is OJ Mayo and Andre Iguodala. Iguodala is a long shot but it’s being reported the Jazz are going hard after Mayo.
Mayo has a bit of a reputation as being a bad guy but I would like to make some counter points. I think you can chalk a lot of that talk up to youth and system. The Grizzles play a very grinding type of basketball and that doesn’t suit Mayo very well. Last year for the Mavericks, he had a very quiet yet productive season. He averaged 15.3 ppg and 40.7% from 3. He also averaged 4.4 apg, 3.5 rpg and had a 14 PER. He fit well into the Mavericks system and was a good citizen. You hardly heard a peep from him all season. I think this is also a sign of maturity on his part. He is only 25 years old but if he were to come to Utah he would be the oldest person on the roster. I think his game would complement Hayward’s nicely and the Jazz style isn’t as grinding as Memphis. If this were to happen the Jazz would then have to decide to resign Foye and get rid of Burks or let Foye move on. I know the Jazz like Foye and for some reason I get the feeling Burks may not be in their long term plans.
No news could very well be good news for the Utah Jazz. They have a long term plan in mind and are going to execute it. Next summer is the time to make a big splash in free agency and the draft anyway. The news I look forward to is Hayward and Favors signing long term extensions this October.