Despite less than ideal circumstances this offseason, Dennis Lindsey has still done a great job positioning the Utah Jazz for both the current and the future. I remain confident in his abilities to continue building towards a contender for this franchise.
Eric Pincus over on Basketball Insiders reported some good news in regards to the recent Jazz signings:
Also per @EricPincus: 2nd years for Jonas Jerebko, Thabo Sefolosha & Ekpe Udoh are non-guaranteed. Great work by Utah with these ones also.— Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) July 30, 2017
This is pretty amazing work by Dennis to get team options on not 1, not 2, but all 3 contracts. I know financial flexibility doesn’t directly win games, but it can position one to make a big trade or have the money for a big free agent. The Jazz can match salary in basically any trade, have desirable contracts, and will be one of a few teams with cap space next summer. Let’s not forget these 3 may also find pretty good roles on this team for great value as well.
Hoops Hype has a running poll to rate the worst contracts in 2017 Free Agency.
Our boy Joe Ingles is currently sitting as the 8th worst signing this offseason. That’s ridiculous. Be sure to go and up vote everyone but Joe, while down-voting our guy as well. Why do I think Joe is actually a solid signing? First off, he’s Joe Ingles. What’s not to love? Second, it was rumored he would be offered a 4 year 60 million deal, and the Jazz got him for 4/52. Some have even speculated that it might be 4/48 with incentives up to 52. Third:
The Joe Ingles contract in Utah starts at $14.1M in year 1 and descends each year with a $10.8M cap hit in 20-21. Utah with $111M in salary.— Bobby Marks (@BobbyMarks42) July 26, 2017
It’s a descending contract, which will become increasingly more valuable as max players, for example, increase at a rate of 8% per year and Joe’s will go down. Especially considering that the salary cap will only go up 2-3% each year.
Don’t you dare talk down on one of our favorites from Down Under.
Watch the top 80 assists from the past NBA season https://t.co/NMou7F9qOe— Kurt Helin (@basketballtalk) July 30, 2017
(hint for those unwilling to watch them all: #’s 75, 77, 64, 50, 24, 21, and 17)
I love that Ricky Rubio is the picture for this story. I also think that Rudy Gobert is better at passing than his reputation would say.
And for more Jazz highlights:
Rodney Hood was a different player before he got hurt. I’m excited to see how he does after a good offseason.
For those of you that love Ricky Rubio, you’re welcome. For those of you who aren’t sold yet, go through this thread and check out Frank Urbina’s work for NBA Math:
If you were too lazy to do so, I’ll give you a couple stats. He became an above average spot-up shooter last season coming in at the 65th percentile. He was the 13th best pull up jump shooter among those with at least 200 FGA. He’s amazing at steals. And he is an elite passer. Matching his success in the PnR with Rudy Gobert’s should be really fun to watch.
Fanrag Sports is compiling their list of the 100 best players in the NBA. I like their spin of listing the player’s ceiling as well as their floor. So far our Jazzmen have come in as follows:
88. Derrick Favors
86. Rodney Hood
84. Joe Ingles
They said this about Ingles:
... with Hayward and George Hill gone, Ingles could step up and do more. Last year, he had a 60.4 true shooting percentage but only a 13.9 percent usage. Rubio is not a high-volume shooter but is a first-class facilitator. Between those two things, it’s feasible that Ingles gets five or six more shots per game, and correspondingly starts putting up another six or seven points on his average. It would be rare to see a 30-year old nearly double his scoring, but with the circumstances in Utah it’s feasible. If he does, Ingles could very well enter into the Most Improved Player discussion, and that would prop him up to the top 75.
I hadn’t really considered Ingles an MIP candidate, but that is an intriguing thought.
88 is an unfortunate fall for Favors, and I have a feeling that a healthy Derrick will climb back up after a hopefully solid season. It will be fun to watch where Rubio and Gobert end up being ranked.
I can’t do this in one poll, so instead I ask: where would you rank the top 5 Jazz players in a list of the Top 100 NBA talent?