Tuesday, May 25, 2010


You're going to have to forgive me as I get caught up.

I've been away from my computer for a few weeks, unable to write. There were a ton of things that I thought about while I was gone, but hardly had any time to write anything down in the notebook I brought.

(The one night I did have some free time, I spent watching LOST so I'd be caught up for the finale the day I got back.)

So for the next few days, I may be addressing things that are old news, but still on my mind. So, skip over them if you need to.

The first thing that comes to mind is the Utah Jazz. They were ousted by the Lakers just a few days after I left and I've been thinking about it off an on ever since. I didn't really expect them to beat the Lakers, but I also didn't expect them to get swept either. Jesus, put up a little bit of a fight. Oh well.

Here's what worries me about the team that just lost in the playoffs: They didn't have Mehmet Okur or Andrei Kirilenko. Not that those two would have been huge difference makers (Kirilenko might have helped a bit more if he was in game shape, but Okur basically took the entire year off) but they would have helped at least a little.

The main thing is that since those two were out, it's just going to give Greg Miller and Kevin O'Connor an excuse to not do ANYTHING this offseason. The entire front office is going to fall back on the same bullshit excuse they've used for the past few seasons: "We think we have a good team and we want to see how well we do when we're at full strength."

Add that excuse and Greg Miller's "I thought we were very aggressive at the trade deadline this year" comment (in which we gave away Ronnie Brewer and Eric Maynor to make room for Okur's extension that he signed right before he decided he wasn't interested in basketball) and you've got yourself a front office!

In other words, "We're going to sit back and watch the same team finish exactly the same next year because we don't really want to take any chances."

I was reading a column by Bill Simmons the other day where he was talking about Mikhail Prokhorov, the new Russian billionaire owner of the New Jersey Nets, and he dropped this paragraph in there.

"...instead of chewing up Jersey's cap space with overpaid free agents, I bet Prokhorov trades for Andrei Kirilenko -- his former CSKA star, as well as an expiring 2011 contract of $17.82 million -- in a deal that won't cost Jersey anything because Utah (struggling to find money for Carlos Boozer) could easily replace Kirilenko with its lottery pick (No. 8 overall) and a second trade. For the Nets, even if they just rented Kirilenko and picked Georgia Tech's Derrick Favors (the draft's best power forward) at No. 3, that's an intriguing short-term front line (Favors, Kirilenko and Brook Lopez) and they'd maintain flexibility for a run at Carmelo in 2011 and/or have Kirilenko's expiring deal to shop this February. And it would go over big back home for Prokhorov. Win, win and win."

Sometimes Simmons is dead on and sometimes he's way off, but did you see the part in that paragraph that makes me worried sick as a Jazz fan? I'll help you out, it's this line "Utah (struggling to find money for Carlos Boozer) could easily replace Kirilenko with its lottery pick..."

Yep. Boozer wants a max contract (upwards of $80 million) and Simmons, one of the most plugged in guys in the NBA, thinks that Utah is going to give him one. Again. They gave him one five years ago and he only showed up for a little over half the games in that time period.

Now I can only imagine that running a professional sports team is an extremely difficult job, not one that I'd be able to do, but holy shit. If the Jazz front office sits back, resigns Boozer just to watch him "get hurt" for half the season again I, along with thousands of other fans (minus Tom and Mike who will be stoked) will be furious.

The team they have now (and have had for the past three seasons) doesn't work. Something's got to give and something has to change.

Unfortunately I know that's not going to happen.

The slogan for next year should be "Mediocrity at it's Finest!"

Always good, but never great. You'd think after 25 years someone would try to do something about it.

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