Thankfully (palliatively?), the Jazz got rid of some dead weight via trades this off-season. One trade opened up the #5 jersey for Rodney Hood, and he snatched it up. In other jersey news today Carrick Felix picked #8 -- a change from his #30, a vacant number. That tells me that Trevor Booker may be taking #30 for himself as #35 is retired (Darrell Griffith). The one guy we don't know about is Steve Novak, who has worn #16, #20, #21, and #23 before. I'm just going to assume he wears #16 as that's what he wore the last three seasons in the NBA, over two teams.
But which player has the toughest legacy to follow, in terms of jersey numbers? Check it:
|Enes Kanter||Trey Burke||Rodney Hood||Carrick Felix||Alec Burks|
|1||Slick Watts||Bryon Russell||Robert Smith||Walt Bellamy||Howard Eisley|
|2||Greg Ostertag||Kirk Snyder||Jeff Judkins||Deron Williams||Gordan Giricek|
|3||Olden Polynice||Milt Palacio||Freeman Williams||Josh Howard|
|4||Jason Hart||Billy Paultz||Randy Foye|
|5||Eric Maynor||Andy Toolson||Diante Garrett|
|6||Kyle Weaver||Armen Gilliam|
|7||DeMarre Carroll||Rusty LaRue|
|12||John Lucas III|
Well, the 0/00 isn't that great. We like these players, but they didn't do much. The #3, on the other hand, has had some memorable players. But it's still likely that Trey Burke is the best player out of this group. The largest group is the #5 players, where three of the last four people were at least one-time all-stars. Just not all with the Jazz. For the most part the last few guys have all been at least part-time starters. I think Hood can be that if he gets a chance and makes the most out of it. The #8 is curious -- why do we keep giving this number to people? It's almost as if the Jazz bulk ordered #8 expected Deron Williams to still be here, but he's not. And as a result, every season since we traded him, we've also had a #8 on the roster. Maybe it's just luck that these guys all just wanted that number? Who knows. As for the #10 spot, Burks looks to be the best player here, despite what the radio play-by-play man occasionally broadcasts.
There are 11 guys who wore #11 before Dante Exum. That's a cool number thingy to keep in mind when bar trivia time comes around. Most of these guys have been point guards too, so that's kinda fun. I do think that Dante should be the best. And man, very few players so far have a legacy to live up to yet. Well, then we get to #15 that has two really good players in Danny Manning and Matt Harpring. Thankfully, Derrick Favors is really awesome. So far the 'current' Jazz guys seem to be better than the guy's number's they are wearing. (Ye Gods of Grammar!) If Steve Novak wears #16 he's going to have to put out some viral videos to live up to what Elson did. As for #20 this is mainly a SG/SF number. Hayward wears it well. Ian Clark? A little tougher act to follow as he's got one HOF coach, a former All-Star, and a long time starter on a 50 win team.
|Rudy Gobert||Trevor Booker||Jeremy Evans|
|1||Ollie Johnson||Jerome Whitehead|
|2||Darrell Griffith||John Gianelli|
No one has worn #27 before, and Gobert would rather wear #15, but that's taken. Trevor Booker cannot wear #35, so I don't know. If you compare him to the #30s out there it's likely that he will be the second guy with an actual legacy to deal with, as Dell Curry, Blue Edwards, and Carlos Arroyo all wore #30 before him. The last guy to do it was Andre Owens. What about Jeremy Evans? We love Mike Brown and Shandon Anderson. But we love Jeremy too!
Overall, MOST of our current guys will have a good shot at being the best guy to wearing their jersey number. There are a few cases where some solid guys wore it before them. But who do you think has the toughest legacy to uphold?