Friend of the program (and, of course, Greg Miller) David Smith wrote this article on UtahJazz360 over the weekend, breaking down the ex-Jazz players who have moved teams in this offseason and how they can expect to play in their new roles. Just a recap of those players who have moved, for those who get lost in the NBA transaction shuffle:
You may have seen this video of the Utah Jazz Top 10 Plays of the 2012 season before, I wrote about it way back when the Jazz were in the playoffs. However, the NBA just posted in on Youtube yesterday, and so we finally have the ability to embed it into the site:
Jay Caspian Kang wrote this interesting piece on Grantland about how the financial and managerial perspective of sports is overwrought. This, Kang points out, was never more clear than in the should-the-Knicks-match-the-Lin-offer-or-not controversy. Key passage below:
Fans who started following the Knicks as a direct result of Linsanity began pontificating about whether or not Lin was really worth $14 million or $52 million or whatever. Conspicuously absent from the discussion was the following argument: I pay money to watch the Knicks, whether through cable bills or tickets, and since I don't see a penny of Jim Dolan's money, I really don't care how much he spends. Give me the most entertaining product possible. Instead, most of the talk about Lin carried a bizarrely corporate tone, as if thousands of Knicks fans had suddenly turned into a small army of workplace-efficiency consultants.
When did the enjoyment of sports become synonymous with accounting?
Kang has a point. This is more true with a team like the Knicks, which has a virtually limitless amount of money to spend in NBA terms, but the point still applies with the Jazz: The LHM company's money is not my money, why does it matter to me how much of it is spent?
My counter, though, is one of interest: at this point of the year, Jazz basketball is not currently occurring. I do want the most entertaining product possible, however, either way it isn't happening now. We may as well discuss the team from the perspective of management, because that is the action that is occurring right now in the NBA season. Is there a harm in this sort of dialogue? I don't think so.
Welcome back to the semi-often feature of Andy's Downbeats, in which we inquire about a new area of off-the-court management of the Jazz! This week, it will be about the in-game timeout entertainment of the home games: the contests, games, and "excitement" that occurs within. The topic of the Jazz Dancers will be covered in a later Downbeat.
A staple of Jazz games is Jazz Bear bowling:
As well as the sledding down the stairs:
I'm honestly surprised the Jazz haven't been sued over that. It seems like it's too easy for kids to replicate and then get seriously injured. This sort of accident seems way too likely.
In general, I'm a fan of the Bear's hijinks that feel less scripted: the pranks(directed at referees or helpless front-row attendees are generally best), the "wasting time at the end of timeouts" usher fights, etc. But how do you guys feel? Is there more that you wish the Jazz Bear would do? What else could the Jazz show during timeouts that would entertain in the arena?
Almost every week, the SLCDunk staff has an online meeting where we discuss the state of the blog, the Jazz, and you guys. Yes, we talk about you, the readers, behind your backs. The good news is that we're really trying to find out about how to make the blog better. However, during those meetings, we keep slipping back into NBA and Jazz chat - it's fun to talk to other knowledgeable basketball fans.
This week, we ended up doing some quick hitter questions amongst the group. Without revealing what we think as to avoid influencing you, answer the following questions in the comments:
Who will have the better record: the Timberwolves, or the Jazz?
Who will get the most playing time, measured in MPG: Favors, Millsap, or Jefferson?
Who will be better this season: OKC, San Antonio, or the Lakers?