The Downbeat #1176 - The "Favor$$$" Edition

"Yes, I just got paid -- but I'm not paying for your lunch Gordon." - Russ Isabella-US PRESSWIRE

Derrick Favors is here! And here to stay! You may have read about it first on this site due to the greater reporting done by Diana over here! There's also this article by SBN's Tom Ziller. In addition, here's @Jazzbaksetball 's piece on Favors' signing. You should really check it out because it's quite in depth. Not only do you see some of the contracts his bigmen peers (in age group) have gotten, but you also see a look at our protected salary going forward.

I had every intention of detailing all of this stuff, but hey, life gets in the way. (Point of example, I'm doing Saturday's Downbeat on Sunday afternoon) I'm just really lucky that the Jazz fans all over the world can cover this event so much better than some people who have much more access than we do. Jazz fans live in a great time because there are so many of us who put in a lot of effort into sharing info.

We know that Favors' deal will start at about $11 million next season, and is for $49 over 4 years. That averages up to $12.25m a year, but because it starts at $11, we can expect it to ramp up as the years go on. We can assume that he'll be making Al Jefferson type of money in a few years. I hope he will be worth it.

What about our team right now?

2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 Totals
Player 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 Salary Years Avg / Yr
1 Richard Jefferson $11.046 $11.046 1 $11.046
2 Andris Biedrins $9.000 $9.000 1 $9.000
3 Marvin Williams $7.500 $7.500 1 $7.500
4 Derrick Favors $6.008 $12.250 $12.250 $12.250 $12.250 $55.008 5 $11.002
5 Enes Kanter $4.505 $5.695 $7.471 $17.671 3 $5.890
6 Brandon Rush $4.000 $4.000 1 $4.000
7 Gordon Hayward $3.452 $4.678 $8.130 2 $4.065
8 Trey Burke $2.439 $2.549 $2.658 $3.387 $4.589 $15.621 5 $3.124
9 Alec Burks $2.202 $3.034 $4.175 $9.412 3 $3.137
10 Jeremy Evans $1.660 $1.795 $3.455 2 $1.728
11 John Lucas III $1.600 $1.600 $3.200 2 $1.600
12 Rudy Gobert $1.078 $1.127 $1.176 $2.121 $3.146 $8.648 5 $1.730
13 Ian Clark $0.490 $0.816 $1.115 $2.421 3 $0.807
Totals $54.981 $33.544 $28.846 $17.758 $19.985 $155.113 34 $4.562
Sal Cap $58.700 $58.700 $58.700 $58.700 $58.700
Difference $3.719 $25.156 $29.854 $40.942 $38.715

N.B. Dollar values are in millions.

This disregards qualifying offers, player or team options, and lists the lowest numbers possible in each case to make a point. Also, sorry Dominic McGuire, Mike Harris, Brian Cook, Lester Hudson, Scott Machado, and Justin Holiday -- your contract numbers are known but not really worth talking about until you make the team. Of course the big question is how much will the picture change when extensions (if any) are made to G-Time, Trey, Kanter, and Government name.

The Jazz have money to spend, but how much of it is going to go to retaining players, and how much of it can possibly go towards enticing free agents? I'm glad this isn't my job.

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Do you like Grantland's Zach Lowe? He's a smart guy but appears to be increasingly polarizing to Utah Jazz fans. In G's league pass ratings Zach got a chance to take a stab at some Jazz fans in a conversation about the Chicago Bulls.

Zach: Back to the watchability of the Bulls: They're contenders, they're nasty, Carlos Boozer is yelling all the time, Joakim Noah is a lock to piss off at least one opposing player every night, and Tom Thibodeau sounds like a baritone musical instrument emitting various noises along the sidelines. They don't run the sexiest offense, but their defense is super-sexy (if you're into that kind of thing). And Rose's presence changes everything.

Bill: And you forgot Jimmy Butler's "breakout star" potential — if there were a basketball blogger summit and someone took a shot at either Jimmy Butler or Kawhi Leonard, the other bloggers would jump him and beat him to death.

Zach: Some of them/us would be off to the side arguing about Jeff Green, and the Utah guys would just be screaming about how Gordon Hayward is secretly as good as Paul George — only no one realizes, because NO ONE CARES ABOUT UTAH. Sorry. Go on.

Tell me why you're mad, Jazz fans. Tell me, not him, because I'll listen and am a trained crisis counselor. I don't know if G-Time is as good as George. Some here do think that, some here do not. I know what the numbers say. But by the numbers alone, Kyrylo Fesenko is a Top 50 All-Time defender in the paint too, and dude can't even get a job in an era of small-ball teams with 15 man rosters, in a league with 30 teams.

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But back to G-Time . . . the NBA seems to recognize something special about him.

They think he could be one of the biggest fantasy sleepers this year. What kind of line do you expect Gordon to have this year? Basketball reference predicts 16.2 ppg (45 fg%, 41 3pt%, 83 ft%), 4.1 rpg, 3.6 apg, 1.0 spg, and 0.7 bpg. Agree? Disagree?

What would be a disappointing year for Gordon in your mind?

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Unless you are insane, you probably missed this. But the statistics department of the NBA also has their own preview section which isn't fantasy based. In their preview of the Northwest Division they got a chance to talk about the Oklahoma City Thunder, Denver Nuggets, Portland Trail Blazers, Minnesota Timberwolves, and our Utah Jazz. In a stats piece they ended up talking about what for the Jazz?

They talked about luck.

That's not all they talked about, but hey, you gotta start somewhere.

Utah Jazz

"Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity." -- Seneca

Following a senior season at Belmont where he shot 34/72 on catch-and-shoot 3s (18/36 Corner, 16/36 Above the Break), Ian Clark went 28/61 from 3 in the Orlando and Vegas Summer Leagues, capped off by a 7/10 effort in the Vegas final.

That landed him a free agent contract with the Jazz, a team that ranked 27th in Corner 3 attempts last year, where he will have the opportunity to catch and shoot passes from Trey Burke. Preparation, meet opportunity.

While that may be the feel good story in Salt Lake City, the real story will be whether the roster turnover delivers much needed improvement on the defensive end. Gone are Al Jefferson (107.6 DefRtg), Randy Foye (106.0), Earl Watson (105.9), Mo Williams (105.7) and Paul Millsap (105.5). Filling that void will mean increased minutes for Enes Kanter (98.4 DefRtg) and Derrick Favors (102.8) and an opportunity for rookie Rudy Gobert to develop his potential as an elite rim protector.

The two-game gap between the Jazz and the eight playoff spot amounted to essentially one more scoring possession and one more stop per game.

I think defense is the essence of this season for the Jazz, but I'm not going to say no to luck either. Especially when the ping-pong balls start to drop.

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Sorry again for being so late with this (all-time most late downbeat ever?) -- it was an emergency. Anyway, we have a game tonight against the Thunder without Russell Westbrook. We're still without Trey Burke. So, uh, expect turn overs. And expect both teams to turn the ball over to their wing players.

Kevin Durant is a beast, but he would have had his hands full if only we kept our rookie's nailed all dolled up.

If you missed this video you need to see it (which builds off of the great reporting done on this by Moni in her downbeat, and at her site).

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