Earlier this week the Utah Jazz sent athletic swingman Alec Burks and two future second round draft picks to Cleveland and in return received sharpshooter Kyle Korver. When news of this trade first broke, my first reaction was one of disappointment. The Jazz essentially exchanged a 26-year-old athletic guard who looked like he was finally over the major injuries that had plagued his early years as an NBA player, for a guy who is 37 years old. Even though Korver is an excellent shooter and has some notoriety to his name (i.e. he is #4 on the all time 3pt shots made and he is a past all-star) it took me a while to get over the fact that he is 37 years old. According to NBA standards, that is old. After thinking about it for a while, I learned more about the actual deal and I saw the logic to it. I finally felt at peace with the trade.
Two future second round draft picks in my mind don’t mean all that much. In the past, teams like the Jazz and the Spurs have found success in their second round selections but overall, second round draft picks usually turn out to be pretty inconsequential in the long run. Alec Burks never would have lived up to his potential in Utah because there are just to many players at that position. The supply of minutes is limited and the demand is too high. He was only averaging 15 or so minutes a game. The Jazz sent him to a team where he, individually, will be able to shine more.
Utah is an excellent organization for Kyle Korver to come to. He has played here before, three of his best seasons of his career were played here in Utah so he already has a fan base and is comfortable with Salt Lake City. Because of the urgent defense he demands from opposing players around the three-point line he will space the floor and make it much easier for slashers like Mitchell and the big men Gobert and Favors to get into the paint more easily.
What I am most interested in right now is the fact that with the trade, Utah received another trade exception worth 3.9 million dollars. The Jazz hold three trade exceptions. The Korver one, the one they received when they traded Rodney Hood to Cleveland, worth 2.4 million and the one they got when they traded away Joe Johnson, worth 3.7 million. The latter two expire at the trade deadline this year. I would love to know what is going on in Dennis Lindsay’s (Utah’s GM) mind right now. There are a few players on the roster who, in my mind, are expendable because they aren’t quite fitting into the system and having trouble finding minutes. Over the next few weeks I am going to actively explore possible trades.
Please comment if you have any ideas.