As we all know, the Jazz let the deadline come and go without dealing Al Jefferson or Paul Millsap. The reasoning was they valued cap space and the overall financial situation that they will have this summer, over any and all deals that were on the table. Opportunity cost associated was, obviously, getting something in return for Al or Paul rather than watching them walk for free, but also the sacrifice of precious minutes in the formative years of Derrick Favors and Enes Kanter. Some made the argument, specifically David Locke, that Enes and Derrick benefited from their extended time spent in limited roles. I agree with the principle of the argument, and do feel that the argument holds true regarding Enes, but I absolutely refuse to believe that Derrick was still in that phase of his career. He was ready to start from day 1 of this season, and it showed many times throughout the year. 2 years of being protected on the bench and mentored on the bench is plenty. Especially for someone with as much potential, and overall talent, as Favors. Yes, consistency would have been an issue, but Favors couldnt have been much more inconsistent than a seemingly checked out and absent Paul Millsap. I do believe that Derrick Favors growth was slowed a fair amount this year.
The Jazz chose to play Al and Paul (and other veterans.....) with the idea of "winning now," In all fairness, at the time of the trade deadline, we were. We seemed to be all but a lock to make the playoffs. We had won 11 of the last 16, including DOMINATING victories, albeit at home, against the Miami Heat and OKC Thunder. I wonder if our FO would have approached the deadline differently if making the playoffs was largely in question. I know there are a TON of things that go on behind the scenes that we dont know about, but from a fan standpoint the whole "win now and make the playoffs" idea at the expense of c4 development appears to be a pretty big flop. The C4 will now be about a 1/2 season, or even a full season, behind where they could have been. I don't think any damage was done to their development. But, like I said, we are now just a step behind.
So here we are, the 2013 offseason. It's the FO's time to shine. Time to show the fans what you can do with the coveted cap space that was talked about so much after the trade deadline passed. It will be interesting to see what they do. The FA pool is sparse. Even more so when were talking about FA's willing to play in Utah. This offseason kicks off a new era in Jazz basketball. Its a big one. Show us what you got Kevin O'Lindsey