I'm bored, so I figured I'd come up with a few predictions for the off-season. I haven't actually thought about these very much. In fact, I'm coming up with most of them as I'm writing.
I don't think there will be much news pre-draft, so I've only got 2 predictions.
Dennis Lindsey brings in at least 2 players that are projected to be drafted top 10.
I'm guessing that nothing will come from it, but I think Lindsey will be able to convince at least two top-10 guys to work out for the Jazz. It will spark a bunch of discussion about DL moving up in the draft, but in reality it will be because someone is likely to slip and DL wants to be prepared.
There will be a surprise lottery winner, but the Jazz will still be set to pick at 12.
I think Minnesota will get the top pick, but I'm guessing a team in the mid lottery will jump up for the #2 pick. I don't know why, but right now I think it will be the Nuggets. (If this happens, then I'm really, really hoping that Orlando jumps to the #3 spot so the Lakers lose their pick.)
There are so many possibilities here that any predictions anyone gets right will be more from luck than any real insight. That said, it's fun to predict things anyway.
Someone will move a top-10 pick, but the Jazz won't get it.
Without looking at any draft boards or current rosters, I think the Pistons will move their pick. It will probably be to another top 10 team, though.
Like at the trade deadline, a lot of point guards will move.
There aren't very many point guards projected to go in the first round, so I'm thinking that a lot of teams will look to trade for a point at the draft. Here's where I think the Jazz may get involved. We have 3 point guards on the roster that we could potentially move, and all of them are on team friendly deals. It's unlikely that Exum gets traded, but Burke or Cotton could be packaged with some picks for either a player or pick.
Cooley, Johnson, and Jarrett are all traded
Here you go, finally a specific prediction about something that matters. All three of these guys are on small and/or unguaranteed deals, so the receiving team could just waive them. If DL has his eye on someone in the late first round, these are the guys that he'll move to get the pick. I'll add that Millsap and Cotton could be on this list too, but as it stands, I think those two are more likely to stick with the Jazz through the summer.
Dennis Lindsey drafts someone in the late 1st round
It seems like every year DL has had his eye on a player drafted in the 20s. I don't think this year will be any different. I expect him to make some move to get a pick in the 20s and grab that guy. If you want a bold version of this prediction, I'd say that DL trades out of the lottery to get that late pick and a future pick.
The Jazz rarely go after big name free agents, but that doesn't mean they won't be active during the free agency period. Here's what I think we'll see.
The Jazz will sign at least 2 players that are 32 or older
I don't think either will be for fully guaranteed deals, and they may be waived before training camp starts, but DL will at least sign them for a bit. I think DL will spend this offseason, or maybe next year, looking for his Kevin Ollie type player. We're a young team, and at some point we could use a veteran 3rd stringer that won't need minutes, but will be a positive locker-room influence.
Someone from free-agent mini-camp will be on the roster in November
The Jazz have a pretty full roster even before the draft and free agency, but I think someone from the mini-camp will make the team. He may get cut before the end of the year. He may spend almost the whole season with the Stampede, but he'll make it through training camp and preseason.
Ingles signs with the Jazz
I think the Jazz keep Joe around. I'm thinking he'll get a Jeremy Evans type deal of ~$2M per year for 3 years. That would be more than the minimum, but still small enough that it could be fully guaranteed without hurting the team's finances.
There will be a lot of players signed with the Jazz for summer league. This may be even more difficult to predict than the draft, but here we go.
Amar will fall in love with a player who won't be invited to training camp
Exum won't dominate
I know this will be the point that most of you don't want to hear, but I'm sticking with it. I think Exum will be a very good point guard for the Jazz, he may even be one of the best two-way point guards in the league in a few years, but I don't think he'll be anywhere close to that by summer league. I think we'll see more flashes of his potential. We may even see him attack the rim, but I don't think summer league will end with him convincing anyone that he's one of the top players from his draft class.
The Jazz won't contend for a summer league title
Not that summer league championships mean anything. At most, contending for a summer league title gets the players an extra couple of games to show off their skills. The Jazz have a mostly full roster and are more likely to be auditioning players for the Stampede than for their own bench. Because of that, they won't be worried about getting a few extra games. If they really want to see more of a player, they'll just sign him to Idaho.
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