The Free Agency Profile for the Utah Jazz
*Photo via NBA.com
Utah Jazz (38-44) - (3rd Northwest Division, 11th Western Conference)
The Utah Jazz didn't make the playoff this season, but they did make substantial strides in the right direction. A majority of this was thanks to trading Enes Kanter.Trading Kanter allowed Rudy Gobert to see a huge boost in minutes. This ultimately changed the Utah Jazz, and it wasn’t because Kanter was a bad player, but more so that Gobert could do things like this, and this , and THIS.
The emergence of Gobert transformed this Jazz team. They went from being a bottom feeder in the Western Conference, to a team that finished the season going 19-10. A pace that would earn them a playoff spot the West. Not only did the Jazz win 19 games on this 29 game stretch, but they were locking teams down. After the All-Star break, the Jazz were the top team in defensive rating per 100 possessions, yes even ahead of the Memphis Grizzlies.
The Jazz witnessed a lot of internal improvement last season and want to continue to see growth. So, the question is will the Jazz look to free agency to speed up the process, or continue developing their own prospects.
Cap Situation: The Jazz have about 12 million dollars in cap space and could potentially have more if they void a few of their non-guaranteed contracts.
Trevor Booker, PF, - Team Option
Jeremy Evans, F - Unrestricted Free Agent
Joe Ingles , SF - Restricted Free Agent
Will They Stay or Go: Jeremy Evans and Trevor Booker could be on the way out, especially if the Jazz decide they want to make a significant move in free agency. It also doesn't help that they drafted Trey Lyles in the first-round. Still, Booker is more likely to be back over Evans, as he was the first big off the bench after Kanter was traded. Ingles on the other hand, will likely be brought back as he showed potential last season and can be a solid role player going forward for the Jazz.
Offense- The Jazz need some offensive firepower to go along with their stingy defense. The Jazz finished in the bottom half of the league in field goal percentage and three-point field goal percentage, laning them the 26th in points per game. What use is a stingy defense if you can’t score yourself?
Floor Spacing- The Jazz need three-point shooters, they need to open up the floor to make life easier for their scorers. It’s likely they will look to add either a stretch four or a deadly three-point shooter.
The Jazz seemed like they are focused on improving internally, but still will likely call a few free agents.
Paul Millsap- A reunion with Millsap has been rumored, Millsap would give them the stretch four they are looking for and a veteran presence on this young team. It also has been mentioned, if they did land Millsap, they would look to trade Derrick Favors. It will be tough to land Millsap, but Utah is somewhere Millsap has already spent a lot of his career.
Danny Green- The Jazz need a great three-point shooter, who better than Danny Green. He shots a great percentage from three(42 percent for his career), plus he would bring NBA Finals experience to this young squad. There are some issues, are the Jazz willing to pay Green and is Green willing to play for the Jazz.