Holy crap Jeremy Evans. That is all. (He was called for a foul on the block shown).
Color Michael Lee impressed
Utah really knows what it's doing in draft. I like this Jeremy Evans kid. He's rail thin, but really athletic, quick off his feet, nice hops
While the biggest issue over the lockout is just how players and owners will divide the money, the owners appeared to have agreed to another amnesty clause with a big difference from last time. From John Canzano at the Oregonian (emphasis is mine),
Two NBA sources told me Tuesday that they believe there's consensus among owners on a few important lockout issues. One of those issues being an amnesty clause that would give NBA teams the ability to release one player, pay his salary, take no luxury tax liability, and also, not have that player count against the season salary cap.
The last time around, the amnesty clause did not contain this provision. This would obviously be a huge deal for the NBA and players. If the players were in favor for it as well, this could be like throwing raw meat into the shark-live free agent frenzy after the lockout is lifted. It's already going to be crazy enough given the current schedule. There could be some big names out there.
If the Jazz were to do this, the biggest name that would come up is Al Jefferson. He makes $14 million this next season (under the current CBA) and $15 million the next. The Jazz would still have to pay him the $29 million dollars he is owed, but that would take their salary cap down to $41 million for this season and $26 million the next. They would still have to fill out the roster of course, but it would put them in line to sign a big-name free agent in the summer of 2012. I'm not saying that they could lure one here, but they would have the cap room.
Using the amnesty clause on Jefferson wouldn't be just for the cap savings. It would also free up the glut of big men that we have. In most cases, it would be insane to release a quality big. But when the team has drafted two big men with the last two #3 picks, there's only so many minutes to go around and the direction of the team becomes clear.
With a talented and young core, things could turn around a lot quicker than expected if that were to happen.
Most of the labor talks have focused on the NBA and its players. As Adrian Wojnarowski points out, there's a third faction that could break up a deal,
"The players don't want to make these kinds of concessions, yet the union keeps giving them," one agent in a prominent firm told Yahoo! Sports. "The union hasn't been listening to its players."
"There's a lot of money and control at stake here," one NBA front-office executive said. "I've never seen people who are in negotiations with each other give up those two things easily. There will be a nasty fight at some point among the owners, the players and the agents. At some point, two of those three entities will square off and go to war.
"It's just a matter of which two entities it will be."
Sweeeeeeet. So even if the owners and the NBAPA come up with a deal, it could be derailed. It sounds like the war could come down to players and agents and perhaps even players vs. players as the "low-to-middle income" guys get anxious to get back to work.
This clip is a few months' old, but Kyle Korver has a hilarious story about the guy that broke into his home earlier this year. Pro-tip: throw away your toothbrush if your home is ever broken into.
(I had this embedded but couldn't disable auto-play. Click on the link to watch).
The Jazz have been sending players to work out at P3 in Santa Barbara for several years now. I wondered at the beginning of the lockout if players were still going to be able to use the facilities given that the Jazz are obviously the ones paying for their workouts. It seems as though that they've found a little loophole in the "no contact" rule that the league has mandated. From Brian T. Smith,
Utah has increasingly relied upon P3 to provide state-of-the-art training for its athletes, and the Jazz have a quasi secret weapon in the facility as the work stoppage enters its 12th week. Corbin and O'Connor aren't allowed to contact Favors or even mention his name while the lockout is in place. But Utah trusts the P3 staff, and Jazz players can drop in and visit the California coast whenever they get the urge to fly west.
It would seem that payment to P3 for training their players would violate at least the spirit of the rule. They're not trying to hide it though and there could be other teams doing similar things. I would imagine that if there was an issue with it, then the league would have come down on them by now.
If the players are training there on their own, the league can't stop them. But I doubt that the players are paying P3 for the training. Perhaps the Jazz prepaid for it? Either way, it's a smart move by the Jazz to give their players access to facilities while the lockout drags on.
Smith's article focused on Derrick Favors. This statement has to make you drool as a Jazz fan,
"He's in the best shape I've ever seen him in," said [Dion] Glover, who spent six seasons in the NBA, including a 1999-2004 run with the Hawks, and starred at Georgia Tech. "I think Derrick's going to have a great year if they do decide to play."
He added: "You can tell the difference in the shoulders. He has those Dwight Howard-type shoulders."
Comparisons to Howard are as high as you can get. Really, he has the same physical tools to be a Howard-type player. Those are lofty ambitions of course. Howard's rookie season stats trump Favors'.
The two did have different roles in their respective rookie seasons. While Howard was the starter and cornerstone from the beginning, Favors was in trade talks as soon as he was drafted. Favors will now be the cornerstone for the franchise going forward.