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Old 07-24-2013, 03:20 AM   #282
Xiao Yao You
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Default Re: The sure to be epic 2013 Jazz off-season!

With Kanter sidelined because of offseason shoulder surgery, Malone’s work with Favors has gotten favorable reviews. McKown watched one of their sessions, along with former Jazz coach Jerry Sloan, who is now a senior adviser with the team.

"Coach Sloan looked at me and smiled," McKown recalled. "He said, ‘I don’t think anybody could give this guy a better workout.’ … Karl was teaching and Derrick was responding. It was way cool."

Oddly, Malone and the Jazz were estranged for years. The animosity came into sharp focus 18 months ago, when a public war of words erupted between CEO Greg Miller and the two-time Most Valuable Player.

"Five years ago, I didn’t think there was a snowball’s chance in hell I would be involved in the Jazz organization," Malone said. "I had my stinger out and they had their stingers out."

The hard feelings, however, have healed and Malone is happily working with Favors.

"The skill set he’s got is absolutely unbelievable," Malone said.

"If I was gauging a kid on a scale of one to 10 — their strength, toughness, being light on their feet — I’d give this young man a nine."

He paused, then added, "I don’t give 10s."
Be interested to hear his take on Enes once he gets to work with him.

Malone’s upcoming schedule with the Jazz involves working with Favors, perhaps Kanter and other young players in August. He might attend the first week of training camp in October.

"Just another page in the book," he said, "and it’s been awesome."

Malone joined the Jazz in 1985. He was the 13th pick in the draft. His first visit to Utah coincided with the state’s Pioneer Day celebration and he accepted then-coach Frank Layden’s invitation to ride on the team’s float in the Days of ’47 parade.

Initially, Layden told Malone the parade was being held because of his 22nd birthday.

"That’s no urban legend," Malone said. "That’s the truth. … I was waving like a [beauty] pageant queen. If there were cellphones back then, I would have called my mom and said, ‘You won’t believe it. All of Utah is here for me.’ "

When the parade ended, Malone told Layden it was "amazing" so many people helped him celebrate his birthday. His new coach laughed and said, "I can’t believe you fell for that one."

This year, Malone will hold a public celebration of his 50th birthday on Wednesday at noon at his automobile dealership in Draper.

"Lord knows I made some mistakes in my life," he said. "I know some people don’t like me. But I wouldn’t want to be any other place in the world for this birthday. …

"I became a man in Utah. People here accepted me — a Baptist kid from Louisiana in a place that was mostly white and mostly Mormon. Awesome, man. Just awesome."

Frank is lucky Karl didn't hit him!
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