The Utah Jazz went from having a lot of everything to having a bare cupboard. Well, that's not entirely true, right now we have nearly unequaled cap space and 'flexibility'. We can't really make trades though. Not at this part of the season leading up to the draft for sure. Around free agency and the new sign and trade rules that I haven't had a chance to read about yet? Maybe. But from what I know -- it's unlikely that our Utah Jazz are going to move up before the draft, or move down in the draft.
Of course, the team has made moves before the draft in previous seasons (like how the team traded a bunch of junk to get D-Will), and during the draft as well (we made draft night trades to get *both* Curtis Borchardt and Kyrylo Fesenko). Do we have the parts to make a move this year? Well, let's take a look at our inventory.
Players on contract / Player rights:
|2005||NBA Draft||1st Round||Pick #2||Marvin Williams||Trade|
|2008||NBA Draft||2nd Round||Pick #44||Ante Tomic||Draft|
|2008||NBA Draft||2nd Round||Pick #51||Shan Foster||Trade|
|2010||NBA Draft||1st Round||Pick #3||Derrick Favors||Trade|
|2010||NBA Draft||1st Round||Pick #9||Gordon Hayward||Draft|
|2010||NBA Draft||2nd Round||Pick #55||Jeremy Evans||Draft|
|2011||NBA Draft||1st Round||Pick #3||Enes Kanter||Draft|
|2011||NBA Draft||1st Round||Pick #12||Alec Burks||Draft|
|2012||NBA Draft||2nd Round||Pick #47||Kevin Murphy||Draft|
That's 9 guys only, and 2 of them may never ever make it to the NBA. I'm assuming that Marvin will come to his senses after talking to his parents and his agent about it. After all, it's hard to say no to $7+ million on the table. So I'm including him here and expecting him to opt in. This would be a perfect time for Tomic to come over, in terms of what would be perfect for the Jazz. But he's got another 2 years on his contract in Europe. Foster is making music now, so there's that.
Effectively the only guys we have who we could 'dangle' at other teams are the C4 -- because no one really cares about Murph, or has seen evidence that Evans isn't just a one trick pony. So in terms of assets that other teams would want, it's a group of young guys who we may not wish to part with. For the record the OKC method seems to involve trading your assets when their value is at their highest as they got rid of Jeff Green and James Harden at the right times. If we could get a starter or 6th man from trading one of the C4, we should look at that.
Okay . . . well . . .
|2013||NBA Draft||1st Round||Pick #14*||Utah Jazz|
|2013||NBA Draft||1st Round||Pick #21||Golden State Warriors||Deron Williams Trade|
|2013||NBA Draft||2nd Round||Pick #46||Utah Jazz|
|2014||NBA Draft||1st Round||Pick TBD||Utah Jazz|
|2014||NBA Draft||2nd Round||Pick TBD||Utah Jazz|
|2015||NBA Draft||1st Round||Pick TBD||Utah Jazz|
|2015||NBA Draft||2nd Round||Pick TBD||Utah Jazz|
|2015||NBA Draft||2nd Round||Pick TBD||Brooklyn Nets||Mehmet Okur Trade|
We have 4 1st rounders and 4 second rounders in the next three drafts. So that must be nice, right? Well, our picks are trending towards the doldrums picks, so I don't know how valuable they are. Our #14 up there is a lotto pick though, so we have a slim chance of getting a #3 pick with that, but don't hold your breath.
We have cap space, so I guess we could trade our picks and something to TAKE ON a bad contract, so that option exists. We could also sign a 2012 FA before the draft and be able to trade them. (Kind of like how you can sign 2012 Free Agents now and add them to your playoff roster) But I don't see our team trying to do that. And it's not like we'd find a taker for Blake Ahearn, even if he is Stake All-Star.
Putting it all together:
The Jazz could make a pre-draft trade in a number of ways. They could package one of the C4, with one or more of our 6 picks (we can't trade picks of the same round in consecutive drafts), maybe the rights to Tomic, and in a pinch, signing someone NOW from the 2012 FA class and add them as well.
It's not as robust an option when compared to the bounty of assets we had before the trade deadline when we had valuable veterans on their last few months of their contracts. But hey, we can't expect to do the right thing. We're not the San Antonio Spurs or anything like that . . .