Sunday, August 29, 2010

The Missing Piece at Center

Our boy from Croatia, Ante Tomic, got a chance to showcase his talents against Team USA yesterday. In his debut side-by-side with these NBA stars, Tomic produced a solid line of 12 points, 8 rebounds, 2 assists, 3 steals, and 2 blocks. Tomic impressed me with his agility, skill level, and size. He was clearly Croatia's primary target in the post. While Croatia got dismantled and Tomic did have trouble holding ground in the post (he's still very weak), it was apparent to me that he'd eventually have a terrific future playing in the NBA someday. Could Tomic be the missing piece at center to our Utah Jazz future? We may have to hope that he joins our ranks in SLC next year in order to give DWill an extra motivation to remain a Jazzman.

Until that time comes, we're still waiting upon Kyrylo Fesenko, the Fess, to agree upon our qualifying offer. According to this article from Hoopsworld, Fess has had some opportunities to go elsewhere but nobody has committed to him based upon his restricted FA status. I'm not certain how much better Fess will get, but for now, we're in dire need of another center. Apparently, the Jazz have also looked at Francisco Elson as a possible fill-in center prospect. Are there any other centers out there who could possibly make a difference to our team? The center prospects are definitely numbered (DJ Mbenga? Earl Barron? or perhaps just maybe... wait for it... our long lost former Jazzman, Jarron Collins).

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Sunday, August 8, 2010

The Awakening of My True Jazz Fanship

This weekend, I was able to attend a fundraising golf tournament which included a "Who's who" grammy list of Utah icons. Some of the Jazz brass were in attendance, along with Senator Orin Hatch and several other prominent folks. However, the figure that I reveled in the most was the presence of Frank Layden. I wanted to take the opportunity to shake his hand and talk about the Jazz, yet, felt the rush to get onto the golf course and start my round of 18. I didn't get that opportunity to meet Coach Layden (What a legend he is!).
Thinking about that missed opportunity, I thought about what I'd say to Frank Layden if I had another chance to meet him. And if I could, this is what I'd say to him... "Coach, 'Thank You' for turning me into a true Jazz fanatic. Your 1988 playoff team was the team that awakened me to my true Jazz fanship. Because of you and that team, I've been a dedicated and devoted Jazz fan ever since." While I grew up enjoying Ricky Green and Darrell Griffith, nothing turned me onto the Jazz more than John Stockton, Karl Malone, and Frank Layden. The Jazz became a serious franchise in 1988 when we laid a tremendous scare into the back-to-back Showtime Lakers. It was then that our team and organization jumped onto a path of NBA relevance and competitiveness. We became a serious contender from that point forward. And for it, I'd like to thank Frank Layden... the funniest, goofiest Coach to ever walk the sidelines of an NBA court. Here's to you, Coach!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Ryan Thompson to Fall Camp

Ryan Thompson has accepted an invitation to participate in the Utah Jazz fall camp. He played for Sacramento during the Summer League and had an amazing Portsmouth Tournament prior to the NBA Draft (despite not getting drafted later). He's an intriguing player... someone who I thought the Jazz would really consider drafting in the 2nd Round. I really like this kid. He's got great ability and may have a chance to make the roster. He'll be in a battle with Othyus Jeffers to make the team.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Staring Into Space... On the Roster

The Utah Jazz will be a luxury tax payer next season. This is something we can expect will happen. With the addition of Al Jefferson to the roster, the Jazz will pay $73.7 million for 9 players. The luxury tax line is set to be $70.3 million.

With that being said, how do you suppose the Jazz will choose to fill out the roster?


As the Jazz continue to add players to the roster, their salary commitments will only rise further past the luxury tax line... meaning additional moves will cost double. Who can we add to the roster for next to nothing?

The Jazz are slowly moving forward in negotiation will Kyrylo Fesenko. His salary committment ought to raise that luxury level up to $1-2 million more. Sundiata Gaines and Othyus Jeffers will most likely return based on the fact that they're relatively cheap and sitting on non-guaranteed contracts... $700K per player. And thus, we can expect more of this fanatically stellar play! I'd expect Jeremy Evans to become our cheap 2nd Round artistic project. If I were a D-League star looking to find a roster spot, now would be a perfect time to try-out for the Jazz. I wonder if I should get in shape! It's time to uncover the cheap hidden gem.