Wow. A Saturday Downbeat? Yeah, I felt like there wasn't enough news during the doldrums of the off-season to require this. But we're doing them again as we spin up towards full capacity SLC Dunk and the regular season. There's not much left on the off-season calendar (the FIBA thing is all but done) -- but the actual NBA calendar matters.
- September 29th: Media Day
- September 30th to October 6th: Training Camp
- October 7th to October 24th: Preseason
- October 29th: Season begins for the Utah Jazz (Houston Rockets @ Utah Jazz)
- October 31st: 2011 Draft Class extension deadline (Enes Kanter, Alec Burks)
So, essentially, there are two weeks left to stay engaged with the NFL and MLB before coming back to your senses and rooting full-time for the Utah Jazz. (Also, NCAA sports are dangerous and take advantage of the student-athletes. Just my opinion.)
We all love Trevor Booker, right? I don't know where he fits in but I've seen some value to this addition. Others have seen much more, but then again, some people are trying to sell him by repackaging him as Paul Millsap -- but then again, some people are willing to be wrong every year then change their opinions in a heart-felt online confessional. One cool think you may or may not know about him is that he was originally a Utah Jazz future pick. He was traded along with Gordan Giricek for Kyle Korver. He was then traded again (as a future pick) to the Minnesota Timberwolves, and then was traded a third time (on draft night) to the Washington Wizards. He's ours now, finally.
Well, you have a chance to meet him today!
SALT LAKE CITY (September 10, 2014) – New Utah Jazz forward Trevor Booker will host "Booker’s Breakfast Assist," a charitable meet-and-greet fan opportunity benefitting the Crossroads Urban Center on Saturday, Sept. 13 from 10 a.m. – noon at Smith’s Marketplace in West Jordan.
The event, which combines Booker’s love of cereal with his passion for giving back, offers fans who donate a box of cereal the chance to get autographs and photos with the four-year veteran. Smith’s Marketplace will also contribute a gallon of milk for every box of cereal collected.
Booker, who signed with the Jazz as a free agent in July, played the past four seasons for the Washington Wizards, averaging 6.4 points and 5.1 rebounds in 235 career games. A native of South Carolina and a Clemson University alumnus, he is also known for his favorite food choice.
"I always ate cereal growing up, no matter the time of day," said Booker. "My brothers did the same thing. We just loved cereal. I probably eat as much as 20 bowls a week."
Booker expresses an appreciation for all types of cereal, listing some of his favorites as Lucky Charms, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Cocoa Puffs, Frosted Mini-Wheats, and Corn Flakes. His latest affinity has been Raisin Bran with bananas. With the help of Jazz fans and Smith’s Marketplace, he hopes to re-stock the pantry with cereal on Saturday for the Crossroads Urban Center, a nonprofit, grassroots organization that provides assistance to low income and disabled Utah residents.
For the record, I'm a Raisin Bran guy.
Stephen A. Harris of "The Final Timeout" listed a whole heap of NBA players that are under the radar. It's not going to be a surprise that a bunch of them are Jazz players, former Jazz players, or Jazz draft picks:
- Paul Millsap (ATL)
- C.J. Miles (IND)
- Kosta Koufos (MEM)
- Gorgui Dieng (MIN) (Draft pick)
- Wesley Matthews (POR)
- Alec Burks (UTA)
Check out the blog here for the full write ups on each player. Personally, I don't really agree with his assessment of Burks' situation, but I am a Burksaholic.
Last season the Jazz won 25 games. It was tied for third worst all-time. Let's look at these really bad Jazz teams a bit more.
|1||1974 75||23||59||28.0%||109.4||1||92.5||99.7||-7.2||Pete Maravich||E.C. Coleman||Louie Nelson||Aaron James||Bud Stallworth|
|2||1979 80||24||58||29.3%||97.6||22||104.2||110.4||-6.2||Adrian Dantley||Ben Poquette||Allan Bristow||Ron Boone||Duck Williams|
|3 (tie)||1981 82||25||57||30.5%||103.9||3||106.2||111.7||-5.5||Adrian Dantley||Rickey Green||Darrell Griffith||Jeff Wilkins||James Hardy|
|3 (tie)||2013 14||25||57||30.5%||91.4||26||103.5||111.3||-7.8||Gordon Hayward||Trey Burke||Richard Jefferson||Derrick Favors||Alec Burks|
These are ranked by win percentage. But I think it is fair to say that some teams, while they still lost a lot, were a lot more fun to watch. You could easily argue that our team last season was one of the most unwatchable in franchise history, if not also pound for pound, the worst team in franchise history.
Compounding this is the funny thing about coaching. The 1974-75 Jazz changed coaches twice so they had Scotty Robertson, Elgin Baylor, and Butch Van Breda Kolff all coach them. THREE COACHES. The 1981-82 team was coached by Tom Nissalke, and he was replaced mid-season by Frank Layden. Yes, the 1979-80 team (another Nissalke disaster) didn't change coaches. But I find it funny that in an era where head coaches are expendable if they aren't good, the Jazz stuck by their man (right up until they hired another head coach while Ty's contract wasn't over yet, if we believe he wasn't fired).
Last season was a slow death to a bad era. I could only imagine how much fun it was to watch Pete Maravich run up and down the court 109.4 times a game though. Much more exciting than what we got last year. But again, that's just my opinion.