Archive for the ‘ Utah Jazz Blog ’ Category

Jazz extend qualifying offer to Gordon Hayward

The Utah Jazz announced today that the team has extended a qualifying offer to guard/forward Gordon Hayward.

Hayward (6-8, 220, Butler) appeared in 77 games (all starts) for the Jazz in 2013-14, averaging career-highs of 16.2 points, 5.1 rebounds and 5.2 assists in 36.4 minutes to become just the second player in Jazz history to average at least 16 points, with five-or-more rebounds and assists in a season (Pete Maravich in 1974-75 and 1976-77). Hayward registered nine double-doubles on the season (seven points/rebounds, two points/assists), posting seven double-digit rebound performances, and six games with 10+ assists. He scored in double figures 63 times, reaching 20-plus points on 22 occasions.

The 24-year-old Jazzman was originally selected by the Jazz in the first round (ninth overall selection) of the 2010 NBA Draft, and has appeared in 287 career games (179 starts) and owns averages of 12.0 points, 3.4 rebounds and 3.1 assists in 28.4 minutes.

In accordance with the league’s collective bargaining agreement, in order for a team to retain its right of first refusal with respect to a restricted free agent, the team must tender the player a qualifying offer prior to June 30. A restricted free agent may sign an offer sheet with any team, but is subject to a right of first refusal with the team for which the player last played.

Utah Jazz hire five assistant coaches

The Utah Jazz today announced the five members of Head Coach Quin Snyder’s staff, naming Brad Jones, Antonio Lang, Alex Jensen, Mike Wells and Johnnie Bryant as assistant coaches.

“We have assembled a talented group of coaches with a track record of winning and successful player development,” said Jazz Head Coach Quin Snyder. “They are high-character individuals with a diversity of experience ranging from playing professionally to coaching in the NBA, D-League, collegiately and overseas, and will be invaluable in building a strong foundation for this team.”

Jones returns for his third season on the Jazz staff since re-joining the organization in 2012. Prior to that, Jones spent two seasons as head coach of the San Antonio Spurs-owned Austin Toros of the NBA Development League from 2010-12, leading the Toros to the 2012 D-League title. From 2007-10 Jones served as the original head coach of the D-League’s Utah Flash (now the Delaware 87ers), earning two playoff berths and a spot in the 2009 D-League Finals. During his five-year D-League coaching career (139-111, .556), Jones had eight different players under his tutelage who were called-up to the NBA a total of 13 times, and also had 12 different NBA players assigned by their respective teams to work with him on a total of 14 D-League assignments.

Previously, Jones worked as a regional scout for the Jazz for six years (2001-07). Jones also served as the head coach at his alma mater, Lambuth University, from 1995-2001. During his tenure there, he was twice named the Mid-South Conference Coach of the Year and led the school to a pair of conference championships.

Lang arrives in Utah with an array of domestic and international experience as both a player and coach, having most recently served as head coach in Japan’s National Basketball League (NBL). Lang coached the Mitsubishi Diamond Dolphins there for the last four seasons, guiding them to the 2014 playoffs. Previously he served as an assistant coach with Mitsubishi from 2006-10.

A member of the winningest graduating class in NCAA history, Lang played four seasons for Mike Krzyzewski at Duke University from 1990-94, appearing in three Final Fours and winning back-to-back national championships in 1991 and 1992. Lang was then selected by the Phoenix Suns with the 29th overall pick of the 1994 NBA Draft, and enjoyed a six-year NBA career with Phoenix, Cleveland, Miami, Toronto and Philadelphia. He also played professionally in the American Basketball Association (ABA), Continental Basketball Association (CBA), International Basketball League (IBL) as well as time overseas in the Philippines and Japan.

Jensen is entering his second season as a member of the Jazz coaching staff. Before joining the Jazz, Jensen spent two seasons (57-43, .557) as the first-ever head coach of the Canton Charge of the D-League from 2011-13, advancing the Cleveland Cavaliers-owned team to the playoffs in both seasons. He was named the 2013 Dennis Johnson NBA D-League Coach of the Year after leading the Charge to a franchise-best 30 victories and an East Division title. Jensen then coached the D-League Select Team in the 2013 NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, leading his squad to a 4-1 record against NBA team entries and advancing them to the quarterfinals of the inaugural summer league tournament. Jensen began his coaching career as an assistant under Rick Majerus at Saint Louis University from 2007-11.

A native of Bountiful, Utah, Jensen attended Viewmont High School there, leading the Vikings to a state basketball title as a junior and was named Utah’s Mr. Basketball in 1994. Jensen played four seasons at the University of Utah (1994-95, 1997-00) under Majerus and helped the Utes to the NCAA Championship game in 1998. Following his collegiate career, Jensen played seven professional seasons in Turkey and one season with the Yakima Sun Kings of the CBA. While playing in Europe, Jensen was named All-FIBA Europe Cup Defender of the Year in 2004, along with being named to the All-FIBA Europe Cup First Team.

Wells joins the Jazz organization with an extensive basketball career that spans 20 seasons at both the collegiate and professional levels, and includes time on the staffs of two NBA championship teams (1995 Houston Rockets and 2007 San Antonio Spurs). Wells was most recently working at Toledo University, after having spent last season as an assistant coach at South Florida and the two previous years in the same role at George Mason (2011-13).

Before returning to collegiate-level coaching, Wells spent 17 seasons in the NBA and had the opportunity to work with some of the league’s best coaches – Rudy Tomjanovich with the Houston Rockets (1995-2003) and Los Angeles Lakers (2004-05), Jeff Van Gundy in Houston (2003-04), Gregg Popovich with the San Antonio Spurs (2005-09) and Flip Saunders with the Washington Wizards (2009-11). Wells’ NBA career began in 1995 with the eventual NBA Champion Houston Rockets (1995-2004) where he worked his way up from assistant video coordinator to assistant coach. In addition, he also worked as the head scout for the USA Basketball Men’s National Team from 1998-2003, including the gold-medal winning team at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia.

Bryant begins his third season with the Jazz since being hired in the summer of 2012. Prior to joining the Jazz, Bryant operated Bryant Sports Academy, an intense and unique skill development program through which he has worked extensively with more than 125 athletes of various age groups to advance each player’s skill set through personalized workout sessions. Among the athletes he has worked with are numerous professional European players and several NBA players.

Bryant is a former standout guard at the University of Utah where he played three seasons (2005-08) and finished his career as the school’s all-time leader in three-point percentage (.455) and ranked 20th on the Utes’ all-time scoring list. He was named to the All-Mountain West Conference Second Team in 2008 and received the Jack Gardner team MVP award for the 2007-08 season. He also set the single-game three-point record (8), and finished his career fifth all-time in the Mountain West Conference in three-point field goal percentage (.490) in conference games. Bryant then played one professional season in Germany with Telemotive Muenchen.

enes kanter

Following medical consultation, Jazz center Enes Kanter has elected to receive a platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injection in his right knee to treat quadriceps tendinitis. The procedure will be performed Tuesday in Chicago by Dr. Michael Terry, and Jazz head athletic trainer Gary Briggs will accompany Kanter.

Following the treatment, the estimated return-to-activity timeline is approximately two weeks.

Kanter (6-11, 247, Kentucky) appeared in 80 games (37 starts) for the Jazz in 2013-14, averaging career-highs of 12.3 points and 7.5 rebounds in 26.7 minutes. He registered 24 double-doubles last season, and scored in double figures in 53 games, reaching 20-plus points 12 times. The 22-year-old native of Turkey is entering his fourth NBA season, all with Utah, after he was originally selected by the Jazz in the first round (third overall selection) of the 2011 NBA Draft.

Here’s the Salt Lake Tribune reporting on the Utah Jazz:

The Utah Jazz roster is one of the youngest in the NBA, and one of the least experienced in the league. Indeed, the Jazz have pinned their future to a core of five young players. And of that quintet, only Gordon Hayward is approaching the age of 25.

But despite the youth — and the lumps this team took last season — General Manager Dennis Lindsey loves the balance of the group. There’s a developmental guy at every position. There are vastly varying skill sets with the younger players, and that lends hope to fans that would like to see a proud franchise return back to its winning ways.

The makeup of the team also has helped with the upcoming NBA Draft. If there’s a team in the top five that can truly focus on picking the best player available — instead of need — it’s the Utah Jazz. And from the beginning of the process, that’s been the mantra of Lindsey, his right hand Justin Zanik and player development guru Walt Perrin.

None of that has philosophy has changed with the hiring of new head coach Quin Snyder. In fact, it helps in terms of continuity that Snyder and Lindsey feel the same on many player personnel issues. But the overall mission of the draft has stayed consistent with Snyder on board: On Thursday night, the Utah Jazz want to pick the best player on the board at No. 5. Even if that best player has a few warts.

Here’s the Salt Lake Tribune reporting on the Utah Jazz:

Jazz put free agent hopefuls through paces

Utah on Wednesday opened a agent mini-camp at their practice facility that runs through Thursday. Of the 26 players invited, some will emerge as candidates for Utah’s summer league team next month, or even for Jazz’s new D-League affiliate in Boise.

“Last year, when we held this camp for the first time, five guys who came to the camp made the NBA,” Jazz Director of pro player personnel Dave Fredman said. “So we told the agents and the players that there is a ton of opportunity here. Some of the guys have played in the NBA last year, some played overseas. But we’re looking for a guy like Green and Andersen, guys who are currently playing in the finals.”

The camp features three players with local ties: Jason Washburn and Carlon Brown both played at Utah, with Brown later transferring to Colorado and leading the Buffaloes to a Pac-12 tournament title. Point guard Nick Covington played at Weber State and was in Turkey last season.

Here’s the Deseret News reporting on the Utah Jazz:

General manager Dennis Lindsey and team president Randy Rigby will travel to Boise, Idaho, on Tuesday morning to make what a press release forwarded from the Utah Jazz described as a “major announcement” regarding the future of basketball in Treasure Valley.

In other words, the Jazz and Idaho Stampede are finally going to announce what has previously been reported: They’re joining together in an exclusive one-on-one affiliation.

This will be the third time Utah and Idaho have been partners, although this time the Jazz will be the Stampede’s only NBA affiliate.

Here’s the Salt Lake Tribune reporting on the Jazz:

Utah Jazz may see Derrick Favors as a center

The Utah Jazz have recently made a potentially significant decision, with VP of player Personnel Walt Perrin telling The Tribune on Thursday that the organization sees Derrick Favors as more of a center than power forward.

That is perhaps the strongest indicator yet that Enes Kanter could be on the trading block. Yes, Kanter can play power forward. But he’s much more of a center, and while he and Favors can play at the same time, both aren’t going to play major minutes at the same spot.

It’s also a sign that the Jazz could be taking a hard look at Indiana big man Noah Vonleh with their No. 5 pick of the upcoming NBA Draft. Last week, Perrin flew to New York to see the 6-foot-9 Vonleh, who left the Hoosiers after a one-and-done freshman season. Perrin also said the team would get Vonleh in for a private workout, sometime in the next three weeks.

Here’s the Salt Lake Tribune, on the Utah Jazz:

Jazz powers are straight-up sick of watching their team get kicked around at the defensive end. They’ve said that again and again, and it’s more than sweet-sounding BS. If we all had five bucks for every time Dennis Lindsey has hammered the point, we’d all be rich enough to buy the Clippers. In the first real chance for the club to hire a head coach outside its organizational walls since … well, ever, this longtime weakness will be addressed. Defense can be taught, stressed, improved, insisted upon. Whoever the new coach is, he will think more like Tom Thibodeau than Mike D’Antoni. It’s not just that defense wins championships, it’s that defense prevents you from getting blown off your home floor by the Denver Nuggets and crushed on the road by the Milwaukee Bucks. It’s a jumping-off point for future success.

Here’s the Deseret News reporting on the Utah Jazz search for a new head coach:

Over the years, Quin Snyder has played for and worked with Mike Krzyzewski. The 47-year-old became a national coaching star while guiding the Missouri Tigers from 1999-2006. He’s been an NBA assistant on multiple occasions, including with the Atlanta Hawks most recently.

By the way, he’s also worked with Jazz general manager Dennis Lindsey.

Now, Snyder has emerged as a leading candidate to become the next head coach of the Utah Jazz, according to multiple sources.

“It’s very plausible,” one source told the Deseret News when speaking of Snyder possibly being hired by the Jazz.

Another source said Snyder is “very high on a short list” of Jazz coaching candidates.

Here’s the Orange County Register blog with a report on the Utah Jazz:

Alvin Gentry to interview for Utah Jazz head coaching job

Alvin Gentry, the Clippers associate head coach and architect of their top-rated offense, is scheduled to interview with the Utah Jazz for their head coaching position.

The news was first reported by Yahoo.

Gentry has been the head coach in Miami, Detroit and Phoenix. In three seasons as the Clippers head coach, Gentry went 89-133.

Gentry’s career record as a head coach is 335-370, with his greatest success coming in Phoenix.

Here’s reporting an interesting possibility:

utah jazz

The Utah Jazz, as part of a broad coaching search expected to feature some 20 candidates, plan to reach out to Jazz legend John Stockton to gauge whether he has any interest in the position, according to sources with knowledge of the situation.

Sources told that Jazz officials intend to at least pose the question to the Hall of Fame guard about his willingness to move into coaching, while mindful of Stockton’s lack of previous coaching experience and the fact that he has long loathed the sort of spotlight associated with the job.

Jazz general manager Dennis Lindsey declined comment Tuesday night about Stockton or any other prospective candidates when reached by

Here’s the Deseret News reporting on the Jazz:

One of the top executives of the Utah Jazz organization and Fanzz stores will be retiring after the NBA draft.

Executive vice president Bob Hyde will retire from his positions as the Jazz’s chief financial officer and Fanzz president at the end of June after working for the Larry H. Miller Group of Companies for the past 30 years in various capacities.

The Jazz are expecting Hyde to continue to provide his capologist input on a part-time basis or as a consultant.

The Utah Jazz announced today that the team has elected not to offer head coach Tyrone Corbin a new contract. As a result, a search for a new head coach will begin immediately.

“I would like to thank Ty and his staff for all of their hard work, dedication and professionalism over the last three-plus seasons,” said Jazz General Manager Dennis Lindsey. “This has not been an easy decision, but after a thorough review process, we as an organization feel that this is the best decision for our franchise moving forward.”

Corbin compiled a 112-146 (.434) record with the Jazz in four seasons, guiding the team to a winning record in two of his three full seasons and a playoff appearance in 2012. The Jazz finished the 2013-14 season with a 25-57 (.305) record.

“The decision to make impactful changes in our organization is never taken lightly,” said Greg Miller, CEO of the Larry H. Miller Group of Companies. “Ty has always represented the Jazz franchise in a first-class manner both on the court and in the community. He did a wonderful job of building relationships with the players and encouraged their growth throughout the season. We wish Ty, Dante and their family nothing but the very best for their future.”

Corbin became the seventh head coach in Jazz history and only the fourth since the franchise’s relocation to Utah in 1979, when he was elevated to head coach on February 10, 2011 following the resignation of Jerry Sloan. Prior to his promotion, Corbin served as an assistant coach for the Jazz under Sloan from 2004-2011. He also played for nine teams during a 16-year NBA career (1985-2001), including three seasons with the Jazz from 1991-94.

“Ty represented himself and the Utah Jazz organization with great class and dignity, and he and his family have been an important part of our team and community for many years,” said Jazz President Randy Rigby. “I want to thank them for their numerous contributions to this franchise and wish them well in the future. They will always remain a part of the Jazz family.”

The Utah Jazz announced today that the team has claimed rookie forward Erik Murphy off waivers from Chicago. In a related move, the Jazz requested waivers on center Andris Biedrins.

Following the moves, the Jazz roster remains at 15 players.

The 23-year-old Murphy (6-10, 230, Florida) was waived by Chicago on April 3 after appearing in 24 games for the Bulls, averaging 2.6 minutes per contest. He was selected by Chicago in the second round (49th overall) of the 2013 NBA Draft.

Murphy played in 136 games (67 starts) over a four-year career at the University of Florida (2009-13), finishing with career averages of 7.7 points and 3.7 rebounds in 18.3 minutes, shooting .514 from the field, .435 from three-point range and .757 from the line. As a senior in 2012-13, Murphy earned First Team All-SEC and AP Honorable Mention All-American accolades after posting 12.2 points, 5.5 rebounds, 1.4 assists, 0.69 blocks and 0.64 steals in 26.4 minutes per game for the Gators. He also shot .516 from the floor, an SEC-leading .453 from deep (72-159 3FG) and .784 from the line. Murphy was named to the All-SEC Tournament team in both 2012 and 2013.

Born in Lyon, France, Murphy is the son of former NBA forward Jay Murphy (1984-88) and Finland national team player Paivi Murphy, and holds dual U.S. and Finnish citizenship.

Murphy will wear jersey No. 33 for the Jazz.

Biedrins (7-0, 250, Latvia) appeared in six games this season for Utah, averaging 0.5 points and 2.8 rebounds in 7.4 minutes per game. He was acquired from Golden State as part of a three-team trade that also included Denver on July 10, 2013.

Alec Burks back in action for Jazz

Here’s the Salt Lake Tribune reporting on a key member of the Utah Jazz returning to action:

Alec Burks back in action for Jazz

After missing four straight games with a sprained left ankle, Jazz shooting guard Alec Burks was back in the lineup Sunday.

It took a moment to shake the rust off.

The attacking guard was in familiar position, getting back to the line quickly upon checking into the game. But he hit on just one of his first four free-throw attempts. Handling the ball in a first-quarter pick and roll, Burks dribbled right and lost it out of bounds.

“When I was talking to him on the court, he said he felt like he was moving a little too fast,” forward Marvin Williams said. “I told him, when you have time off your timing is the first thing to go. You just have to tell yourself to slow down a little bit. … He slowed down and he got back to the same old Alec.”

Here’s the Deseret News reporting that the Utah Jazz will make a change this offseason:

So long, Florida humidity. Hello, Nevada heat. Breaking tradition, the Utah Jazz will participate in the NBA’s Las Vegas Summer League this July.

The Jazz had been going to the Orlando Pro Summer League since the Rocky Mountain Revue stopped functioning in 2008, in large part because of how the Vegas event led to the demise of Utah’s annual hoops showcase.

“Having our training camp in Orlando was difficult for us and we felt it was time to move forward,” Jazz general manager Dennis Lindsey told the Las Vegas Review-Journal, which first reported the switch. “We feel there’s a natural tie-in with Las Vegas and it’ll be great for our fans to follow us (and) be able to see our young players. We’re very excited about the move.”

Enes Kanter embracing the hook shot

Here’s the Salt Lake Tribune reporting on Jazz center Enes Kanter:

It’s a shot Jazz center Enes Kanter has in his repertoire — and one his coach would like to see more of.

“When he feels the guy, feels the guy and it’s that running hook across the lane with his rhythm, I think that’s a really good shot for him,” Ty Corbin said. “And actually it gives him an opportunity to get fouled because he’s going across the basket. He’s moving, his guy is moving.”

About 11 percent of Kanter’s attempts this season have been some variation of a hook shot, according to the NBA’s data. He’s hitting on 61 percent of them.

“Kareem in his day perfected the shot,” Corbin said. “It’s very effective. I’ve seen a few of them myself live. You can’t get to it.”

Here’s the Salt Lake Tribune highlighting the importance of Derrick Favors to the Utah Jazz this season:

Utah Jazz struggle badly when Derrick Favors is out

Derrick Favors’ injury has changed a few times over the season. It’s been a hip sprain, a sore hip, an inflamed hip and, most recently, a sprained hip.

But one thing has remained constant: the Jazz are winless when he doesn’t play. With Favors missing his seventh game in the Jazz’s last 13 on Saturday, Utah fell to the Minnesota Timberwolves and dropped to 0-9 on the year in games without Favors.

“I think everyone is confident in each other’s abilities but what Derrick brings to the table, this team really misses when he’s not here,” said forward Marvin Williams. “He’s an anchor. He’s a great rebounder. He’s a great one-on-one defender. He’s also a great help-side defender. Derrick has always been there to save the day. But, obviously, when he’s not back there, it’s been difficult.”

The Utah Jazz announced today that the team has claimed third-year forward Malcolm Thomas off waivers.

The 25-year-old Thomas (6-9, 225, San Diego State) was waived by San Antonio on January 23 after appearing in one game this season, scoring two points, grabbing nine rebounds with two blocks in 15 minutes vs. Milwaukee on January 19. He also appeared in 10 games while on assignment with the Spurs’ NBA Development League affiliate, the Austin Toros, where he averaged 15.2 points, 9.4 rebounds and 2.40 blocks. Thomas was signed by the Spurs on Dec. 3 as a D-League call-up from the Los Angeles D-Fenders, for whom he appeared in two games and was averaging a league-best 33.5 points and 15.5 rebounds.

The former San Diego State Aztec has appeared in a total of 16 career NBA games over three seasons with San Antonio, Golden State and Chicago, averaging 1.1 points and 1.8 rebounds in 5.4 minutes. He previously saw action in three games for the Spurs during the 2011-12 season, and spent time with both the Warriors (five games) and Bulls (seven games) in 2012-13. Thomas also appeared briefly in three games for the Bulls in the 2013 NBA Playoffs.

Following the move, the Jazz roster now stands at 15 players.

Utah Jazz waive forward Mike Harris

Utah Jazz waive forward Mike Harris

The Utah Jazz announced today that the team has waived forward Mike Harris. Following the move, Utah’s roster now stands at 14 players.

Harris (6-6, 242, Rice) appeared in 20 games this season for Utah, averaging 4.2 points and 1.7 rebounds in 11.3 minutes per game. Harris was signed as a free agent on September 26.

At 11-25 through Monday’s games, the Jazz have the third worst record in the NBA. They are in a state of rebuild, with a current core of Gordon Hayward, Derrick Favors, Trey Burke, Alec Burks, Enes Kanter, Richard Jefferson and Marvin Williams. The team simply needs an upgraded roster, and that will take time. But as for now, Mike Harris moves on.

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