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2018 Utah Jazz Team Grades: Rodney Hood

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The Utah Jazz pronounced Rodney Hood their starter at the beginning of the season—he was traded 5 months later.

Utah Jazz v New York Knicks Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

Rodney Hood entered the Utah Jazz season as the proclaimed number one option. With Gordon Hayward abandoning the Utah Jazz franchise for Boston and George Hill looking for greener pastures in, ahem, Sacramento, the Jazz’s scoring mantle was ripe for the taking. Utah had to replace those shot attempts somehow and Rodney Hood’s skillset seemed the best fit for them. Cut to only five months later and Rodney Hood had been supplanted by Donovan Mitchell, relegated to being sixth man on what was a non-playoff team, and was in and out of the lineup due to random injuries and anxiety. In short, whatever could have gone wrong for Rodney Hood did go wrong.

Scoring leader for Utah? Replaced by a #13 pick in the draft.

Starting Small forward? Not if Joe Ingles were to have anything to say about it.

Sixth man? Only if he was healthy enough to go.

The last Utah Jazz young Utah Jazz player to have such a fall from grace in so short a timespan was Ronnie Brewer, but he needed to be traded first, suffer an injury with his new team, and struggle to return to execute that fall. Rodney Hood had the express lane to himself and ended the season not getting minutes on a Cleveland Cavaliers team that has shown that they’re willing to play anybody with a pulse and a live dribble in order to get LeBron James any help.


Rodney Hood

Average GPA: 1.3

Grade: D+

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Grade Notes from the SLC Dunk Staff

Mychal Lowman: Mentally it’s hard to separate how Hood was with Utah versus how he’s ended up now. At the beginning of the season, I was championing him as Utah’s soon to be leading scorer. Then Mitchell came along, then injuries, then his patented roller coaster streaks. Hopefully, Hood finds his pro basketball self because the tools are there to be a starting guard in the NBA, but it wasn’t with Utah and doesn’t appear to be with Cleveland.

James Hansen: Rodney Hood entered the season with probably unfair expectations and, sadly, didn’t come very close to meeting them. It’s a shame because Rodney hitting his potential would have been huge for the Jazz.

Taylor Griffin: I thought this was going to be Rodney’s year. Sometimes it doesn’t work out how you want.

Andy Bailey: It’s probably tough for casual NBA fans watching the Eastern Conference Finals to remember this, but Rodney Hood was decent offensively for Utah. He averaged 16.8 points and shot 38.9 percent from three for the Jazz, but his plus-minus was atrocious. Thanks largely to his defense and ball-dominance, Utah’s Net Rating (net points per 100 possessions) was 10.9 points better when Hood was not on the floor.

Kaleb Searle: Oh, Rodney. Rodney, Rodney, Rodney. I tried to not let his time in Cleveland influence this grade too much, but it’s not looking good.

Tavan Parker: I don’t think Rodney had a terrible year if you remove the expectations he had in him coming into the year. With that perspective, however, yeah... what an atrocious year for Hood.

Utah Jazz v Sacramento Kings Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Jason Walker: His only saving grace was his scoring, which was second-best behind Mitchell. Outside of that he was next to worthless to the team, hence why he’s no longer with the team.

Jordan Cummings: I really wanted Hood to do well this season. I hoped he would. Everything was set up for him to be successful, but he just couldn’t figure things out. I was glad to see him traded to make room for more Donovan Mitchell, and Utah got Crowder out of the deal. Meanwhile, Hood is out of the rotation in Cleveland.

Diana: Oh, Hood, you could have had so much. I don’t understand what really happened with you this season with us or the Cavs but you definitely get a F from me.

Sam Goodrich: Rodney Hood’s season was pretty sad. He started out relatively strong, but with Donovan Mitchell’s emergence, we suddenly had a logjam at the shooting guard position. With Jonas Jerebko not quite panning out at the power forward position, trading Rodney Hood for Jae Crowder was a natural shuffling of talent. Both are probably equally talented if we’re being honest, but Jae is a better fit with our current personnel. I don’t know what happened to Rodney after the trade, but his grade is based off of his time with us. He is better when he plays with a star small forward than when he tries to be the star small forward.