After a fantastic start to the season, the Utah Jazz are coming off a 3-game losing streak and are showing signs of being the team a lot of people thought they would be this season. The problem is their incredible start to the season puts them on a trajectory that would make them either a late lottery team or competing for a play-in spot in the playoffs. It’s the no man’s land of the NBA and the worst spot to be if you’re looking to become a championship contender. For a team that just traded their best players last offseason, they’ve got to make some decisions. Will they be okay with a play-in level team, or would they like to bottom out for a chance at some incredible prospects in the upcoming draft.
The good news for Utah is they have some very good role players that could help a lot of teams out that are looking to improve now, like the Lakers and the Warriors. Let’s make a deal!
Here are some trade ideas for the Jazz that make sense for them and for the Lakers and Warriors.
Warriors and Jazz
Kelly Olynyk for James Wiseman and Patrick Baldwin
James Wiseman has been sent to the G-League for reps and, even though that’s a good way to get him some reps, the Warriors need contributors instead of developmental players. If they want to find a player that can step in immediately and help them win, Olynyk is the perfect fit.
For Utah, he’s had a fantastic impact. For Utah he’s shooting 54% from the field and 449% from three. There’s no way he keeps up those numbers, but he’s looked very good for Utah. Put him in the Warriors system with the space created by Steph and company and it’s hard to see him not succeeding there as well. The other benefit for getting Olynyk is his passing. For Utah he’s averaging 3.1 assists per game. He’s the perfect fit on the offensive end. On defense he isn’t an elite rim protector but he’s a smart, tough defender. He takes charges and fills lanes. He won’t solve the issues defensively for Golden State, but he’ll certainly help.
There are two caveats to this. First, Olynyk isn’t available till the 22nd of November when two months have passed since his initial trade to the Jazz. The other issue is it will take the Warriors to let go of Wiseman. He was the #2 pick in the draft and still shows a lot of potential, he’s just in need of time on the floor to make mistakes and grow, something the Warriors can’t afford to do right now.
Lakers and Jazz
Mike Conley, Kelly Olynyk, Malik Beasley for Russell Westbrook and the 2027 and 2029 unprotected firsts from the Lakers.
We know that the Jazz had talks with the Lakers about Bojan Bogdanovic before they ended up trading him to the Detroit Pistons and it obviously fell through. The Jazz still have a lot of assets that could be very interesting for the Lakers, though. Here’s a trade that could help save the Lakers season while also helping the Jazz lose more games and get some fantastic future assets.
The only thing keeping this from happening is the waiting period from the last trade for Olynyk. But on November 22nd the Jazz can trade Kelly Olynyk since two months will have passed since he was traded tot he Jazz. But what’s one more weekend?
This trade would put the Lakers right back into contention. Olynyk, Conley, and Beasley have had a fantastic season and would fill the holes in the Lakers roster with three players that can stretch the floor. Olynyk is the perfect fit next to Anthony Davis with his ability to play center and power forward. He’s also having a career year shooting the three.
Mike Conley and Malik Beasley are both elite shooters and would provide high level scoring to help boost the Lakers offense to high levels. Mike Conley is also a perfect fit here. His ability to run an offense could help the Lakers second unit and could provide more continuity with their starting and secondary units. If the Lakers are looking to win now, and don’t want to wait for the Indiana Pacers to make a decision with their players, this is likely the next best offer.