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The ICYMI Edition -- The Downbeat - #867

Big Al is a good dude, Alec Burks at point guard, and science-y stuff

No, you haven't gotten enough of Jeremy Evans' dunk? How could you possibly, right? Read P3's detailed scientific breakdown of Jeremy's dunk and what he did in the offseason to make that dunk possible here. Complete with screencaps, videos, pictures, and lots of big words I haven't heard since high school science class.

NBA TV did their preview of the Jazz two days ago, and replayed it again yesterday (or something like that). Their guest analyst was none other than our favorite Mailman, Karl Malone. As always, Karl provided interesting insight. Entire 22-minute show here:

Karl made the case that *now* is a great time to start playing the Jazz's young core, because of factors like 1) teams throw money at players during free agency; 2) players are going to want to sign elsewhere if they don't get playing time.

The playing the young guys now part, though, isn't out of "what if." Instead, it's to build for the future with the big picture in mind, and it also happens to take care of the "what if."

He also proposed starting Alcus Burkledore at point guard, noting that Burkledore led his team in assists in his final year at Colorado. Under this scenario, Burks would be starting alongside Mo Williams in the backcourt, and they would switch on defense. The rest of Karl's starting lineup? Paul Millsap at the 3, Derrick Favors at the 4, and Big Al Jefferson at the 5.

I know, it's like he was possessed by Yucca Man.

SI recently published a pretty heartbreaking read on Andris Biedrins' struggles as he's lost his confidence due to his coaches losing faith in him, his own fans booing him, and Jackass getting mad at him for working out at P3 and getting a tan instead of taking part in voluntary workouts with the team late in September.

It was while working out at P3 that Biedrins grew closer to Big Al:

To hear Utah Jazz center Al Jefferson tell it, Biedrins still has his. Last fall, during the NBA lockout, Jefferson and Biedrins worked out together in Santa Barbara, Calif., alongside other Jazz players. The two did it again last month, and Jefferson remains perplexed by the contrast. "The player I see in the workouts is not the player I see in games," Jefferson said by phone from Jazz training camp. "His footwork is great, he can finish with either hand around the basket." Jefferson goes on, talking about how Biedrins attacks the hoop, how he uses his spin moves and height and athleticism to get to the rim, how every action is explosive.

Jefferson advises Biedrins to pretend he's the one guarding him in games. Biedrins tries, but it's hard. "He always tells me to play in the game like I do in the practice," Biedrins said. "He says, 'C'mon, you can be so much better than that.' " Biedrins pauses. "And I kind of agree with him."

You also hear stuff like this from the Jazz's own beat writers:


A lot of guys in Al's position, knowing that Enes Kanter is the future of the team at his position, probably would be less than eager to see, much less help, Kanter improve. But that's not Al. Whatever you think of him as a player, we can be proud to have a guy like that on our team. He's a good, good dude.

Live broadcast on your Jazz-owned radio station:

Randy Rigby: I can't tell you how much of that stick 'em spray I used to have to spray on my hands to see if I could try to help, hopefully, palm the ball. I don't have the biggest hands. And so I'd have to use that, that, that glue stuff to help give me some, some stick there to, to try to do it.

Spence Checketts: Hey Randy, whatever works.

Gordon Monson (talking over Checketts): They called me "Big Hands." That was my nickname.

*Diana and moni break out their guitars and launch into a chorus of "Sticky Balls," sung to the tune of Phoebe Buffay's "Smelly Cat."*

As Diana mentioned in her great post yesterday (which you should read if you haven't already), Gordon Hayward mentioned on 1280 that the team had had a talk at practice about Enes' Twitter. Rigby also talked the day before about how Enes has been told by the Jazz brass that he needs to check himself before he wrecks himself.

On a related note:

1) What's the over/under on how long before Enes debuts his new tattoo;

2) What body part(s) will the tattoo encompass;

3) What will it be of?