Just as I tried to start writing this, Kendrick Lamar hit the stage at the Grammys last night. Moments after that, I watched Lupe Fiasco beat fighting-game legend Daigo Umehara in Street Fighter V. Also, Kanye probably tweeted some stuff. (I don't know that for sure, but I feel good about predicting it.)
A lot happened last night, is what I'm saying.
Unfortunately, nothing that interesting is going down in Jazzland -- yet. But we'll talk potential trades, look back on our Rising Stars, and more. It's your Tuesday Downbeat.
LUPE BEAT DAIGO AND HE DIDN'T EVEN KNOW IT pic.twitter.com/yJ2H7SQj3R— Wario64 (@Wario64) February 16, 2016
First, the latest trade news from last night, via the Trib's Tony Jones:
The Utah Jazz have had multiple discussions with teams about a trade involving guard Trey Burke ahead of Thursday's NBA trade deadline, The Salt Lake Tribune has learned from league sources.
First off: I don't doubt it. I'm sure Trey Burke's name has come up a lot as Dennis Lindsey and crew have been working the phones. Burke has shown this season that he has a decent role in the NBA as a bench scorer, and any team that gives up the point guard help Utah craves will probably want some cover at the position in return. Trading Trey while (if?) he has value makes sense.
Having said that: As rumors continue to fly this week, it's important to remember that they RARELY begin with sources inside the Jazz organization. Under Kevin O'Connor, the Jazz were legendarily tight-lipped about potential deals, and that rep has carried on into the Lindsey era. Lots of people have interests at stake here -- players, agents, front offices, competing teams -- and it's always a good idea when considering a rumor to also consider who benefits from that rumor becoming public knowledge.
Which is not to say I'm questioning the reporting of TJ or any other Jazz writer. This is a tough week on the NBA beat, and reporters are given a LOT of information, from many different sources, and some of it will completely contradict what they were told moments earlier. There's a difference between determining whether a reporter is accurately reporting what a source told them, and whether that source was telling the truth, or whether they knew what they were talking about. I try to keep that in mind when it comes to trade rumors.
But hey, as long as we're talking trades...this isn't a rumor, but a pretty interesting proposal from ESPN's Kevin Pelton:
New Orleans Pelicans send: Jrue Holiday and Norris Cole
Utah Jazz send: Trey Burke, Alec Burks and the Jazz's 2016 second-round pick
Pelton: With Marc Gasol's injury leaving the Memphis Grizzlies vulnerable, the Jazz are consistent PG play away from realistically getting as high as fifth in the West. Unless George Hill is available, I like Holiday best of the potential fits. His size, defense and shooting allow him to upgrade the position this year without blocking Dante Exum, since the two could potentially play together.
With Tyreke Evans out for the season -- and maybe not a part of New Orleans' long-term plans -- the Pelicans get Burks to replace Evans' ability to create off the dribble, improve their guard depth and save some money.
I'd do that in a heartbeat. With his similar size and the way he's improved his shooting since entering the league, Holiday could be a great mentor for Dante Exum, at a cost and contract length that the Jazz could handle.
What do you think? I'm admittedly not great at the ol' Trade Machine, so I'd love to read your proposals.
On that note: Only one new FanPost this week, from jazzyman:
Would you trade Rodney Hood for Jeff Teague?
Pros: We get a legitimate NBA point guard who could regain allstar status in the right situation. We stop letting opposing point guards steamroll us over. We add a nice piece to a championship caliber team. Dante Exum is big enough to play SG and backup PG, so it wouldn't stunt him. In fact, he'd have a good point guard as a mentor.
Cons: We lose our probable #1 scoring option in future years. Teague may not be able to make up for the offensive punch that Hood brings to the court. Hood may be a star in the future, and has a higher ceiling.
Click through above if you'd like to see more.
If you missed DJJazzyJody's piece on the Jazz's trio of Rising Stars, it's a good 'un. I especially liked the description of Trey Lyles asserting his Canadianness:
Lyles grew up in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, so it's probably not too big of a surprise that his sports life began on a sheet of ice.
"I played hockey first," he said.
When his ex-Kentucky teammate, Suns rookie Devin Booker, learned that tidbit, he laughed.
"He said that to prove he was Canadian," Booker joked. "That was it."
Utah Jazz digital director Billy Lea has an app for that. If by "that" you mean "every team in the NBA."
(We'll give him the benefit of the doubt in assuming the Jazz-specific apps are on an earlier screen.)