Experts over at ESPN published an Insider Article today that ranks the Top 30 NBA point guards. The good news is that one Utah Jazz player made it, while not every team had a Top 30 point guard. The bad news, if you call it that, is that the player selected was ranked 30th. Who did they pick? Trey Burke. The 22 year old sophomore is coming off the bench and trying to find his role. I believe this role, as the only bench scoring threat, is temporary and will no longer be his primary role next season when Alec Burks returns (either as a starter or as the designated bench scorer if they continue to start Rodney Hood). But for now Trey Burke finds himself in the Top 30.
That's not bad when you consider that (by my count) there are 99 point guards who have played at least one minute in the NBA this year, and many more who are on rosters who have only collected DNP-CDs or NBA-DL minutes so far. So it's the glass half full / half empty issue. He's the WORST out of the entire ESPN list, but that means he's still in the Top 1/3rd of the NBA.
Actually, it's not even an issue of half full / half empty; because even if the glass is filled up to half of its' capacity with liquid, the other half is filled up with gas. It is 100% filled, but only partially with something we can touch or feel. And that's the case with Trey Burke. We see what he does, and see so many of his mistakes. But the 22 year old Trey Burke isn't the Trey Burke that's going to one day be. But more on that in another post today (if I get all the work done for it).
Anyway, here's the list.
And here's what they had to say about Trey:
"I don't think he's quick enough to get his own shot. I don't think he shoots it well enough. Really small, struggles with length. I don't know what he's going to be. He's really got to make shots to be good. So undersized."
-- NBA player
Yeah, these are all valid questions for Burke. But there are plenty of NBA players who figured it out over time. Will Trey? Time will tell. But there's one thing we know right now. And that's the West is just insane for point guards. Sure, Trey is the worst in the Top 30, and the Worst in the West to boot -- but while the majority of the East is bunched up in the 300 to 499 groups, the West has an equally large number of point guards in the 500 to 700+ group. If the Jazz were in the East playing for the lotto every year like Philly or Orlando I'm sure we'd see a lot more risk free basketball from the entire club, and probably a few more coaching changes. What Utah is doing is building something. And something good. I strongly believe that Trey can be a part of that, even if he's ONLY the 30th best PG in the NBA. (Or the ranked #30 / 99, by my count.)
The Lakers, Magic, 76ers, and Knicks didn't even have a PG on this list. Utah had one. And in another three seasons if everything goes as planned, the Jazz could have two with Dante Exum making this list.. I'm not worried about Trey Burke right now, or the Utah Jazz point guard spot. They may one day become mutually exclusive, but even so both will be fine.
After all, even ESPN thinks that we have one of the Top 30 players already, one thing the ESPN Insider article didn't show was ages. Trey is the youngest in this entire group. And that fits in with the Jazz. They are building something. People are noticing.