True Blue Jazz is very proud to announce that we have joined the Bloguin Network.
Our new and vastly improved blog can be found at www.truebluejazz.com
The new site will have our most recent posts along with the ultimate Jazz fan forum. Anyone can come and participate in the Jazz talk at True Blue Jazz. Don't worry though, you'll still be able to access our old site right from the new site. The very best of Booner, Hammy, Pick-n-Roll, Horny, Scrum and CB Jack will remain on My Utah Jazz.
So please update your link to the new True Blue Jazz!
Monday, November 10, 2008
True Blue Jazz is very proud to announce that we have joined the Bloguin Network.
Do you want to see how the Jazz will look next year with only one big guy? Watch these next four games while Memo goes home to Turkey. This could turn out being a bad road trip with both D-Will and Memo being out. Lets see if Milsap can earn his paycheck for next year and the Boooze can be a super-duper star for a few games.
On a more serious note, I hope everything is okay for Memo and his family. I love that the Jazz as an organization allow their players to be family men first and basketball players second. I hope they all realize how important that is. Hurry back Memo.
Hello Blog fans. The NBA Blogosphere is back again with another edition of the Blogger Power Rankings.
This weeks rankings are being hosted by At The Hive. A great Hornets blog. (Sorry I just threw up a little in my mouth after I typed that.)
Please go visit them and drop some comments about why D-Will is better than CP3. They just don't seem to get it.
Here are CB Jacks rankings and comments.
Lakers Week 3 and I am already bored of them being on top.
Celtics Their young guys have attitude...I like it.
Jazz Another let down at MSG. Will adding D-Will move this team higher in the rankings?
Raptors SLEEPER ALERT SLEEPER ALERT. Celtics should be worried.
Cavaliers Too bad the Kings men won't be able to put Lebron's hope of winning a
championship in Cleveland back together again.
Hawks Pinch me please. This can't be for real. No Josh Smith? Bring back the old Hawks.
Magic The Man Child continues to dominate the east. This team is on fire.
Hornets They'd be undefeated with Deron Williams...
Pistons A.I. proving to the world that he is old.
Rockets The Dream (Shake) just turned into a nightmare.
Suns I have nothing to say about the suns.
Knicks D'Antoni may have awoken a sleeping giant.
Trail Blazers ROYverated
Bucks Not bad for a bunch of guys who pretty much suck.
Pacers Granger is playing like he wants an All-Star bid.
Nuggets Chauncy will help....them become a 9 seed.
Kings How much is Vegas losing now that they are winning?
Spurs Parker will save the day! Wait...he what? Uh oh.
Grizzlies Mayo is making a great case for R.O.Y.
Heat Still WADEing with the bottom feeders
76ers I told you so.
Bulls Deng. These guys suck.
Mavericks They don't deserve to be this low. But someone has to fill this spot.
Thunder Almost put an amazing comeback together against the Jazz.
Nets Train wreck.
Warriors Thanks Monte. We owe you one.
Bobcats Felton got some revenge on Paul. Loved it.
Clippers 2nd best team in LA
T-wolves Had my hopes up. Then flushed them down the toilet.
Wizards Agent 0? Not even 007 could save this team.
Friday, November 7, 2008
Jerry Sloan won his 1,000th game with the Utah Jazz tonight.
I've not been a huge Sloan fan, but any basketball fan (including Dave at The Dream Shake) has to admit that Jerry Sloan is a first ballot Hall of Famer and will go down as one of the top 5 coaches of all time.
It appears Jerry has loosened the reigns a little and is giving his young team more opportunities to show their abilities. He does regret one thing. Not playing Deron Williams more as a rookie. It's okay coach, I think that turned out pretty well.
Jerry has coached from the Reagan administration,
Most coaching wins with one team:
1. Jerry Sloan 1,000 Jazz 1988
2. Red Auerbach 795 Boston 1950-66
3. Gregg Popovich 633 S. Antonio 1996
4. Red Holzman 613 New York 1967-82
5. John MacLeod 579 Phoenix 1973-87
My favorite thing about tonight was during the post game. A reported asked Jerry if there were any games that stood out in his career.
Jerry's response? The losses.
Classic Jerry Sloan.
8 made FGs
21 made FGs
Also...29 rebounds! I suppose that's what happens when the other guys miss 20 shots.
Look for lots of Fess, Kofous, Almond, and CJ in the second half.
Thursday, November 6, 2008
OK, I admire what the Jazz are doing with 2 backup point guards and last night was certainly a good win, but its time to for D-Will to get back. We got 8 points, 10 assists, 2 rebounds and 5 turnovers from the PG possition last night, not too bad. And for the season the PG position is averaging 10.5 points, 9.5 assists, 2.5 rebounds, 2.25 steals and 3.25 turnovers all very respectable numbers for sure. But, D-Will by himself last year averaged better with 19 points, 10.5 assists, 3 rebounds and the same turnovers so obviously we are statistically better with him playing.
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Here is the latest Jazz notes floating around the NBA.
-ESPN has Boozer ranked very high in their current MVP Race. Vote for Kirilenko for 6th man of the year (I can't believe I just typed that)
CB Jack: Can there even be an MVP race 3 games into the season?
-Paul Millsap is "Not consumed by minutes or money matters"
CB Jack: Yeah he may not be consumed, but we as fans are.
-The inevitable Hall of Fame process has started for Stockton and Sloan.
CB Jack: Sloan's acceptance speech would go something like this "Thanks…what the hell am I supposed to do with this?"
-Blazers Edge breaks down tonight's game. I think they really like the Jazz up there in Liberalville.
CB Jack: I think they really like the Jazz up there in Liberalville.
-The Utah Jazz will honor their Olympians tonight.
CB Jack: Boozer should only get to be honored the last 15 seconds of the ceremony once it's basically over. That might make him feel more deserving of any credit.
"Which one of you said I look old?"
I was going to write a witty caption about the beard, the hair, the bandanna, the shirt, the set of arms that make me look like Karl Malone, but I really think I would just be wasting my time. The picture says enough. The pic shows a 23 year old Walton.....had he not gained 100 lbs and the red hair turned gray I would have sworn it was taken yesterday.
Forward: Thurl Bailey
Are you a twenty-something man wanting to look more mature? Consider this recipe:
One Pair of Large/X-Large Vintage NBA Approved Goggles
Crew Cut/Flat Top (Either will work)
One pair short shorts. (If they reach half-way down the thigh, they are too long)
Under the short shorts add one pair of Team Logo Spandex
One Pair Mid-Size Striped Socks
One X-Large Soft Knee Brace (Hard Brace with Metal Poles to add 10 more years)
Guard: Clyde Drexler
I'm going to be honest, although I know a lot of you will judge me for watching this, Clyde looks exactly the same in this photo as he did when he appeared on Dancing with the Stars. I guess all the humiliation you go through being the 20 year old with a receding hairline pays off when you turn 50 and look exactly the same. Who's laughing now?
Guard: Ron Boone
This picture is almost scary. The man has not aged since this pic, taken in 1932. (With the exception of the shaved head...which I think makes him look more mature.)
So, there you have it, The First Ever "Jazz/Blazers Young Man in an Old Man's Body Team." If you have others, feel free to share them in the comment field. Be sure to tune in and root for our Jazz tonight. We need all the help we can get to regain our dominance over Portland.
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Monday, November 3, 2008
I know its really, really early in the season and you can not tell much about this Jazz team after just two games, but I am going to try to anyway based on the stats. The only real surprise to me in these rankings is where Ronnie Price ended up. All of the other stats and team ranking seem to be right on after 2 games worth of data.
The Team Stats:
Offensive Efficiency: The Jazz rank third in the league in points scored per 100 possesions and 8th in average points per game. Not a big surprise here, the Jazz are an offensive machine and should be in the top 3 all year. Obviously the Jazz will get better with D-Will as well.
Deffensice Efficiency: The Jazz rank sixth in the league in points allowed per 100 possesions and 3rd in average points allowed per game. Can they keep this up? That is the NBA Championship question for sure. If they can keep both of those stats in the top 7 of the league I say yes.
The Player Stats:
According to Hollinger's PER stat rating the Jazz have 3 players in the top 25 of the league. Boozer is coming in a #3, Brewer is at #21 and AK is at #25. Only San Antonio can equal 3 in the top 25 right now. You have to assume that D-Will will end up a top 25 player as well. I dont see AK and Brewer staying in the top 25, but they should be in the top 50 quite easily. The early returns for Ronnie Brewer look like all of the shooting practice and weight room work are paying off. AK is doing a little of everything and despite the constant questions about not starting he seems genuinely happy to playing as a 6th man.
There is a pretty big gap from AK to the next Jazz player, but this next group is playing right around average for league according to the PER stats. Memo comes in at #133, Kover is at #142, Milsap is at #144 and Brevin Knight is at #160. If Memo can find his shot he should move up. Korver, Milsap and Knight seem to be right where they should be in the middle of the pack as role players.
Ronnie Price comes in at #242, which I don't think is reflective of his actual play on the court. He isnt really that bad and the team seems to better with him on the floor than Knight. His 1-9 game againt Denver is holding him down. CJ Miles is the last rotation player for the Jazz coming in at #254. I hope that CJ is better than this, he is certainly getting paid to be better. At least we have Harpring coming back to take his minutes and then maybe we can package CJ and Morris to the Sonics for some draft picks or spare parts.
I should point out that only 288 players qualify for this stat based on their playing time being more than 6 minutes per game. So no ranking for Almond or Fes.
I think that the Jazz are off to a good start and that we can take these wins and stats for what they are. While we have been missing D-Will our opponent has been missing their best player as well so I feel that the results of the games are close to what they would be with everyone healthy.
Friday, October 31, 2008
See ya later Morris, we hardly new you. The Jazz have decided that Morris Almond no longer has a place with the team and have declined to pick up the option on his contract meaning that he will become an un-restricted free agent next year. The SL Trib reports that the Jazz are seeking out a trade as well so there might be more to this story. Hopefully the Jazz just trade him for a future pick somewhere down the road or package him with some other loose parts for something with a little more valuable. I say we play GM for the day and post your best trade options including Morris Almond.
I would do one of two things here. Trade Almond for a future first round pick and hope that the team you send him to gets bad. I would look to trade him to someone like Detroit, Dallas or Phoenix who are going to have to go through some re-building years soon so you might get lucky with them bottoming out when you get their pick. The second trade I would explore is Almond and Harpring for a decent back up big man. I would move forward assuming that the Jazz are going to be able to re-sign Boozer and Okur, but not Milsap and try to get someone to fill that void.
Thursday, October 30, 2008
My observation from last night was how bad did you feel for the white, very goofy Chris Andersen! He knows he is playing for the McThuggets and has too keep up with his appearance! During the offseason he did a lot of work, not on his game skills but body art! He spent countless amount of time in his favorite tattoo parlor trying to make himself fit in with the team! When his mother was asked about his offseason work she mentioned he “looks like a human coloring book.” Interesting take!
At least he has the background history that the GM of the McThuggets looks for when finding NBA talent (suspended for two year after the 2006 season for breaking the drug policy of the NBA) So maybe we shouldn’t feel so bad that he may not be fitting in! I am sure him and his fellow THUGS A.I, Carmelo, and lets not forget THUG LIFE himself K.Martin, have a lot to talk about on trips home after losing to the Jazz.
We could not have started out with beating a more disliked team by Jazz fans (Well at least by me). Lets keep it rolling and I hope to see DWill back on the court soon. Turn over fest last night! Good thing the McThuggets had the same problem!
The Deseret News has a great video of the Jazz Black Out from last night's game against the Nuggets.
Long live the Allan Parson's Project...
I thought they did a good job of keeping it fun, yet not thuggish like you would expect at the Pepsi Center.
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Now, we all know that Deron will be watching from the sidelines, but that's no reason to not be totally amped up for the game!
Game #1 vs. Denver Nuggets
The storyline for this game will no doubt be the absence of both Deron Williams for the Jazz and Carmelo Anthony for the Nuggets, who is serving a 2-game suspension for drunk driving. While Deron is the heart and soul of this Jazz team, I think Anthony is a bigger loss. The Jazz have depth at every position and can satisfactorily replace DWilll; Denver, on the other hand, will be hard-pressed to replace Anthony's 25.7 points and 7.4 rebounds, especially since they gave away their best rebounder and defender in Marcus Camby (who we'll see plenty of this weekend). Denver finished in the 8 seed last year and was handled easily by the Lakers in 4 games. The Jazz finished 4 games ahead of the Nuggets and won the season series 3-1 while scoring an average of 120.8 points per game.
This is essentially the same Jazz team as last year, aside from the Hart/Knight trade (YES!) and the addition of Kofous. Denver sent Camby to the Clippers for peanuts and lost Eduardo Najera to the Nets via free agency. Nene is back and so is the Birdman (the Nuggets' team preview can be found here).
Denver just doesn't seem all that threatening anymore. We beat them last year when they had a lot of talent, and they are not as good as they were then. The Jazz should win this going away, but look for Denver to fight pretty hard for the first 15 minutes or so. The combination of differing styles of Ronnie Price and Brevin Knight in the PG spot should make things difficult for the Nuggets, despite Allen Iverson's massive talent level (unfortunately, he can't score all their points...or can he?)
The line is Jazz by 7, I'll take the Jazz 105-96, but it'll be a 15 point game in the 4th quarter.
Be sure to head over to The Nugg Doctor and give them a little good-natured trash talk.
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Can we officially say that after the Jazz win this game Wednesday night that the Northwest division crown will be all wrapped up? I say yes we can, go ahead and put a fork in Denver, they are done. Unfortunately we are missing the two marquee players in this one so it might have a bit of an extended pre-season feel to it. D-Will is out with an injury and Carmelo is out with a case of being stupid. Way to keep it real Carmelo - you make 12 million per year, call a freakin cab or limo when you get drunk. Better yet, have the party at your house, I am sure that it is more tricked out than any bar you are at. Its time to start being a grown-up now Carmello.
On to 10 predictions for the game.
1 - Allen Iverson will go off for 40 but he will do it on 10-35 shooting and 12-15 from the line.
2 - Carmello will try to go out and get drunk after the game, but will not be able to due to the low alchohol level of Utah beer.
3 - Carlos Boozer will grab 20 rebounds. Who is going to stop him? And with AI jacking up 45 shots there will be plenty to get.
4 - Ronnie Price will dunk emphatically on Kenyon Martin.
5 - Does Kenyon Martin still play? (I know that is not a prediction, but is there a worse contract in the league than Kenyon Martin? Maybe Nene?)
6 - Ronnie Brewer will score 12 points in the first quarter on 4 dunks, 1 circus shot and 2 freethrows. Get ready for Ronnie Brewer Jazz fans, this is going to be a season full of ooh-aah dunks.
7 - The Jazz will score 120. In fact, I think every team in the league might score 120 on Denver this year.
8 - D-Will's ankle injury will get replayed about 25 times making all Jazz fans throw up a little in our mouths each time.
9 - AK will flirt with a triple double. The lack of defense by the Nuggets fit his helter skelter style perfectly.
10 - The lights are going to go out for pre-game introductions for the first time in Jazz history and Jaron Collins will trip over Kosta's feet further delaying his comeback from the horific off-season golf cart accident. Hurry back big fella, we need you.
All said, I for one can't wait for this game and season to get going. It has been a long offseason of torment and what ifs and its time for a season of redemption. I am a little bummed that game one is missing some of the flair with D-Will and Carmelo being out, but either way its game time and this is our year.
True Blue Jazz was voted the #1 Jazz blog on the net.
Thanks to all of you who actually went and voted for us.
Big props to the other Jazz blogs who participated.
All That Jazz
The Cowhide Globe
We are honored to share the same passion of Jazz basketball with you.
Eric Neel of ESPN put an interesting article together about Carlos Boozer and his son's sickle cell anemia. Good article. The title at the top is just slightly creepy.
I would love to type a quick editorial praising Carlos for being a great person. But there is a part of me that just won't allow me to do it. I won't go into details, but it's the result of something I saw first hand.
I wish Carmani the best in his healing and growth process. I hope having his family back in SLC puts Carlos in NBA mode and he is able to capture his regular season dominance and transfer it to the playoffs.
Here is a link to the article.
Monday, October 27, 2008
I had to type that just to get a stir out of him. Finally a website he can't control.
Though you TBJ fans might like the Season Preview of the Utah Jazz over at HP.
I have to admit, he brings it...and he brings it hardcore. I actually agree with his assessment of AK. Matt hates the Jazz. True Blue Jazz hates the Rockets and Nuggets. Booner hates his man nippers. It's all in the circle of life. It's okay to disagree.
SLC Dunk didn't find it funny at all.
I really don't care either way. However I did ask Matt personally to reconsider one of his comments. I know he's a Hornets fan and I can't wait for the back-and-forth we'll get when these two teams meet in the post season.
Let the Jazz ripping begin!
(Please visit Hardwood Paroxysm and let him know your thoughts so he believes me when I tell them there is a Jazz Nation.)
Wow, we even got a follow-up article. Not every fanbase can say that.
Friday, October 24, 2008
Let's just say it was a Utah Jazz love fest. You will find my comments after each question.
1. Who will be the Newcomer of the Year in the Northwest Division?
Greg Oden – 69.2% (9 votes)
Kevin Love – 15.4% (2 votes)
Mike Miller – 7.7% (1 vote)
Rudy Fernandez – 7.7% (1 vote)
CB Jack: That's some pretty stiff competition you got there Mr. Oden. Where is Brevin Knight on
2. Who is the most overrated player in the Northwest Division?
Carmelo Anthony – 46.2% (6 votes)
Carlos Boozer – 15.4% (2 votes)
Kevin Durant – 7.7% (1 vote)
Al Jefferson – 7.7% (1 vote)
Andrei Kirilenko – 7.7% (1 vote write in)
Jeff Green – 7.7% (1 vote write in)
Chucky Atkins – 7.7% (1 vote write in)
CB Jack: Thank the Lord that bloggers are finally starting to put their thinking caps on. Melo IS the most overrated player in the West and perhaps the NBA. I was a little surprised at the AK write-in (I know it was you Nugg Doctor…wait. How did he not get invited here? I am not happy about that at all. You must respect the Nugg Doctor). How can AK be overrated if he is no longer rated at all?
3. Who is the most underrated player in the Northwest Division?
Ronnie Brewer – 30.8% (4 votes)
Mehmet Okur – 23.1% (3 votes)
LaMarcus Aldridge – 15.4% (2 votes write in)
J.R. Smith – 7.7% (1 vote)
Ryan Gomes – 7.7% (1 vote write in)
Nick Collison – 7.7% (1 vote write in)
Joe Smith – 7.7% (1 vote write in)
CB Jack: Easy Ronnie. Don't let this stuff get to your head…on second thought, do. The TBJ boys and I attended the preseason game last night against Portland and come the 3rd quarter Booner says to me "Ronnie has 18 pts? When did that happen?". I have to say he has a legitimate change at making the All-Star game…if Kobe gets hurt, Brandon Roy does a boycott and the entire West Coast falls into the Ocean. So you're telling me there's a chance!?
4. Who is the worst rotation player (at least 15 minutes per game) in the Northwest Division?
Sebastian Telfair – 30.8% (4 votes)
Johan Petro – 30.4% (4 votes)
Jeff Green – 23.1% (3 votes)
Corey Brewer – 7.7% (1 vote)
Matt Harpring – 7.7% (1 vote)
CB Jack: Um…someone got this really wrong. I would put one CJ Miles at the top of this list. And every other "worst" and "overrated" list.
5. Who will make the playoffs?
Portland Trailblazers – 61.5% (8 votes)
Portland Trailblazers and Denver Nuggets – 23.1% (3 votes)
Denver Nuggets – 15.4% (2 votes)
CB Jack: zzzzzzz zzzzzzzzz
6. Are the Utah Jazz a legitimate championship contender?
Yes – 76.9% (10 votes)
No – 23.1% (3 votes)
CB Jack: Damn skippy they are. Again I'm sure the Denver blogs banned together and boycotted the Jazz in this answer. SLC > Denver biatches!
7. The Minnesota Timberwolves will be in the playoffs…
in 5 years – 38.5% (5 votes)
in 3 years – 23.1% (3 votes)
um…don’t hold your breath T-Wolves fans – 23.1% (3 votes)
next year – 15.4% (2 votes)
CB Jack: I couldn’t tell if this question was a joke or not? I think it was. I hope it was.
8. Who will be the player of the year in the Northwest Division?
Deron Williams – 77.0% (10 votes)
Al Jefferson – 15.4% (2 votes)
Greg Oden – 7.7% (1 vote write in)
CB Jack: Well done bloggers. I am so glad there wasn't an AI or Melo reference here. I understand the T-Wolves fans put Al Jefferson, I would too if he was on my team. I was a little surprised there was no mention of Brandon Roy?
9. Where will each team finish in the Northwest Division?
First – Utah Jazz – 100% (13 votes)
Second – Portland Trailblazers – 84.6% (11 votes)
Third – Denver Nuggets – 84.6% (11 votes)
Fourth – Minnesota Timberwolves – 92.3% (12 votes)
Fifth – Oklahoma City Thunder – 92.3% (12 votes)
CB Jack: And there you have it. All 13 bloggers agree that the Jazz will be hanging another "Northwest Division Champions" banner in the ESA. Pick-and-Roll said it best last night at the game: "We seriously need to stop hanging the division banners. It's time for a World Championship banner the size of the Great Salt Lake in this joint."
Here are the bloggers who conceded the division crown to us. This guys are doing great work.
Jeremy – Pickaxe and Roll
Andy – Denver Stiffs
Wyn – Canis Hoopus
College Wolf – TWolves Blog
Joe – Thunder Guru
Zebulun and Benjamin – Blue Blitz
Royce – Thunderworld
Casey – Trail Blazers Center Court
Coup – Rip City Project
Dave – Blazer’s Edge
Basketball John – SLC Dunk
UtesFan89 – The Utah Jazz
CB Jack – True Blue Jazz
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
ESPN just came out with their Western Conference Predictions. Chances are you're all nerds like me and have already read them. If not, however, here you go. Sure you can view every team in the West, but there is only one team that matters.
Pretty predictable stuff really. We are always going to be third on the list behind Kobe, CP3 and their clubs. I'm a bit disappointed by the few "4's" we have on there but our Homer, John Hollinger's #1 ranking makes up for that.
Could this be the year? In Utah, the phrase, "This is our Year" is a bit cliche. In fact, I think C.B. Jack has the "This is Our Year" banners from '96, '97, '98, '99, '06, '07 & '08 hanging on his newly born sons' wall. But the 2008-2009 Season may truly be our year. Why, well there are all sorts of reasons. We're young, yet mature, we have depth and a whole lot of talent. But realistically, lets cut the crap. After this year this team could completely dismantle. We know we can't afford everyone and who knows what trades will go down, who will stay who will go etc. The truth is, there is a sense of urgency felt by Jazz Nation that it's now or never. I'm feeling it. Call me crazy but I truly think we can do it. I'm ready to get this started and find out what the Jazz are made of.
I'm curious to see what you think. How would you rank the Western Conference? Be honest. (However, if I see one person rank Utah anything other than #1, I will find out who and where you are and send the Millsap bro's to take care of you. It can be done, I promise. Have you seen Eagle Eye? Watch your back naysayers.) No pressure though. Here is my completely un-biased prediction of how the Northwest will be Won this year:
5. Thunder (We will drop one to this team this year....guaranteed. Most likely right after we roll L.A. and Boston.)
My prediction for the West:
Monday, October 20, 2008
Deron will miss at least 2 weeks after an MRI revealed a second-degree sprain. After Ross Siler's post about the possibility of missing 4 weeks, hearing only 2 weeks sounds like great news. Deron could be back as early as game #3 against the Clippers, but that's probably pushing it, I would guess that his first game is either Portland on Nov 5 or Oklahoma City on Nov 7, right before we head out on a five-games-in-seven-nights Eastern road trip. Of course, there's still the possibility that he could miss 4 weeks, but I'm going to be optimistic.
Does anyone else find it a little weird that he hasn't made an All-Star team yet? Although he's had a bit of a setback thanks to Saturday night's ankle sprain, that oversight should be corrected this year -- especially if the Jazz are as good as I think they'll be. Williams has a good chance of passing Steve Nash and Chauncey Billups in the point guard hierarchy given his steady improvement; even last year, his numbers were much stronger after the break than before, including 12.0 assists per game in the second half. And while Carlos Boozer busies himself with the vagaries of the South Florida real estate market, Williams will spend a full year as Utah's unquestioned go-to guy.Also on the list is Ronnie "Don't Call me Ron" Brewer. Hollinger puts him in the "Stealth All-Star Candidates" category with this description:
If I had to vote one guy as the league's most underrated player, it's him. A productive two-way player for one of the league's best teams, the third-year pro reportedly has shot the ball far better this preseason -- and that was his one weakness. Even if he doesn't improve a lick from outside, his knack for scoring around the basket andI'm not sure how I feel about all this attention from Hollinger. In the past we have flown under the radar just long enough to sneak up on some teams. Ask any "expert" who the top 3 Western Conference contenders are and you'll be hard-pressed to hear anyone name the Jazz. But if we keep getting pub then it'll be harder to sneak up on anyone.
improving defensive skills make him one of the best players at his position, and he's still getting better at only 23. With his playing time likely to increase along with his prominence on a key Western contender, he may not stay underrated for long.
However, it may be stupid to think that we'll be sneaking up on ANYONE this year. With 15 playoff victories in the last 2 years, I doubt that any team is going to look past the Jazz.
In an effort to remove this image of D-Will from my mind I started thinking about ways this D-Will injury could be worse. Now, I know the results from the MRI are still up in the air, but lets assume worst case scenario and D-Will is out 4-5 weeks. Which I should say before I get into the lighter side of things, would ruin, Halloween and Thanksgiving....not to mention me and my four year old daughters birthdays. In fact, I've already told my daughter if D-Will is not back by her birthday she can count out any gifts. Why, you ask. Because I will be using the funds for the weekly bouquet of flowers I'll be sending to D-Will. Stalker? No. True Blue Loving Caring Fan? Yes. There is still hope for us Jazz fans. Here is why.
Remember this celebratory-induced injury? (my personal favorite.)
Ahhh, eeee, ewwww, ahhhh.
Do I really need to explain why D-Will's sprain is better than this?
(Don't look if you have a weak stomache)Umm, yea. I'll take the sprain over this.
Saturday, October 18, 2008
I was just watching the preseason game against the Bulls and Deron rolled his ankle pretty bad on a 3-point shot in the first quarter. He came down on Rose's foot and was writhing in pain before being carried off the court. I HATE speculating, but it looked bad enough that he might miss the first couple games of the season. This team is maybe a .500 team without him, HEAL FAST AND COME BACK WITH A VENGEANCE!!
Couldn't get the video up before ESPN (roomie's Bday party had precedence) but here's ESPN's recap and video highlights (NBA.com highlights as well). Make sure your desk is clear of sharp objects.
UPDATE: Left ankle inversion sprain and X-rays are negative.
UPDATE 2: Ross Siler points out that a severe ankle sprain means Deron would likely be out for 4 weeks, which which takes us to Nov 19 against Milwaukee, 11 games into the season. These are the games he could miss if it is a "severe" sprain:
- @ Clippers
- @ Thunder
- @ Knicks
- @ Sixers
- @ Wizards
- @ Bobcats
- @ Cavs
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Here was my thought process as I watched the preseason game against the Nuggets.
Before the game:
"I should post a recap about the game and rag on the Nuggets. I should also post about how the current Jazz players are starting to look more like the 90's Jazz players."
After the 1st quarter:
"I should post about how I don't like the Nuggets and how they have become the Cincinnati Bengals of the NBA."
"I think I'll post about how Deron Williams is an underrated defender"
After the 3rd quarter:
"I am definitely going to post about how Deron is an underrated defender, how Boozer is still soft, how AK should NOT be coming off the bench, and how I didn't really miss Matt Harpring except when Kenyon Martin was on the floor and I wanted them to fight."
"I wish this game would end. I should blog on that. I should blog on the fact that the Nuggets have no business challenging the Jazz for the division title. The Northwest Division is a two horse race. Jazz and Blazers."
After the OT loss:
"I have given this team my heart and soul. I have dedicated countless hours to complaining about their every move and praising their every other move. I have jumped on and off of multiple band wagons. But one bandwagon I have driven and am wearing a seat belt on is the CJ MILES IS HORRIBLE bandwagon. If he trips and loses another game for this team, preseason or not, I am going to jump Jazz ship all together."
Hop on Jazz fans because it's the truth.
How on earth did we let them convince us that CJ Miles was worth 14.8M over 4 years. Honestly. Maybe it was our fault. The Bloggers fault for not making a big enough stink that this guy is not the future, he is not a starter, and he is an NBA journeyman at best.
No, I refuse to take the blame. I'm blaming all of you Jazz fans. I'm blaming Larry Miller's illness. I'm blaming Greg Miller for letting K'OC talk him into one of the biggest blunders in Jazz history. That's right, I just dropped the history line.
Don't give me the "It's Preseason" line either. Here are CJ's stats so far in this preseason.
-Started all 4 games
-just under 20 minutes per game
-Shooting 29.2% from the field
-Shooting 68% from FT line
-Shooting 20% from 3-pt line
-7 pts per game
Do not start this kid under any circumstances. His defense has been below average at best. Don't try and talk me out of this. Sorry Hammy but I just cannot agree with you or the rest of the world about bringing AK off the bench and starting CJ. The blogging world and beat writers everywhere are justifying themselves with claims that are nothing short of a reach. Fact is, the Jazz are a slow starting team and having CJ "Light's out" Miles starting will only add to that. AK has played with this starting group for 4 years. He knows them and they know him. I can attach a CB Jack personal guarantee that AK's numbers will be the exact same whether he starts or comes off the bench. Only one thing can motivate AK and that is AK himself.
So CJ, when you read this (we know you will because every NBA star Google's himself 3 times a day), I dare you to comment and tell me you feel good about accepting that fat paycheck every two weeks. Tell me that you deserve starter minutes. Tell me that you're gonna prove us all wrong and that this is finally your year. Tell me CJ. And in return I will call you a fake to your face.
I will not rest until CJ Miles is not in a Jazz uniform. Jazz nation will agree by the end of November Think about this post next year when we are looking for 15M to sign our core players.
Oh, and since I had already done the leg work. Here is what I originally wanted to blog about after the 1st quarter.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
I have to admit, I am intrigued by the idea/plan to bring AK off the bench. I think that bringing AK in with the second group could be the missing link for the Jazz. Realistically you could replace AK in the starting line-up with CB Jack and that unit would still be good so why not bring him off the bench and give him more control with the 2nd unit? Here are the possitives that I see with this move:
- AK gets to be more of a facilitator with the second unit. The offense should run through him and that is not a bad thing. AK is not a black hole shooter, he likes to make the great assist as much as scoring.
- AK gets to play against other teams second units. This should help all of his stats and make him happy. Happy AK = productive AK.
- No more Matt Harpring. I love the energy and toughness that Matt brings, but he is a shell of his former self and needs to become more of what CJ Miles was last year.
- Gives Almond and Miles some minutes to see what they can do with the starters as spot up shooters. Whoever is in this spot will get plenty of good looks.
- The starters would only have one player (Brewer) that the other team could leave open to double D-Will and Booze instead of two. Imagine Booze and D-will going one on one with the ability to kick it out to two shooters (Memo and Miles/Almond) or find Brewer cutting. The offense should be dy-no-mite.
This would be your second unit for the Jazz. This group could beat the Sonics (I refuse to call them the Thunder) or Grizzlies first team guys.
Backcourt - Price or Knight and Korver
Frontcourt - AK, Millsap and either Booze or Memo depending on the rotation.
I am curious to see how this all plays out when Matt comes back, but I have high hopes for the Jazz with AK coming off the bench. Chime on what you think will happen if AK stays as the 6th man for the season. I am curious to see what everyone else thinks about this.
Friday, October 10, 2008
In preparation for the BIG HUGE VERY IMPORTANT preseason game against Portland on Sunday, we shot a few quick questions over to Dave at www.blazersedge.com. Here is the skinny...
TBJ: The Blazers won the season series against the Jazz last year 3-1. Who wins the season series this year.
BE: Best guess: 2-2. The Blazers still have some nice matchups but everybody is going to be taking Portland more seriously this year, including the Jazz.
TBJ Note: I could see this happening. The Jazz struggled with the Blazers last year. I can't wait to see what Blazer has his career night against the Jazz. I'm expecting Steve Blake to drop 32 and 15 assists on us.
TBJ: Compare Mehmet Okur with Arvydas Sabonis. 1-on-1 who would win in their prime.
BE: The key here is “in their prime”. Sabonis never played in the NBA in his prime. Before injuries took him he was an absolutely huge man who could dribble and pass like a point guard, shoot like a small forward, and dominate centers. He’d have killed Okur no matter what stage of his career Mehmet was in. The NBA Sabonis…I still would rather have him as a Blazer because I loved watching him but from a straight statistical standpoint Mehmet has a strong argument and I'd expect Jazz fans to choose him.
TBJ Note: You are expecting correct. Jazz fans will always certainly take Memo here. Although Arvydus was hands down the first Euro player who I really liked.
TBJ: Which rising star will win a title first: Deron Williams or Brandon Roy
BE: Williams won’t have the players around him that Roy will. Brandon has the better chance. That doesn’t mean he’s a better player or that the Blazers are a better team right now. Portland’s starting lower but their upward arc is steeper.
TBJ Note: This could be true as well. While I think the Jazz window is open and the Trophy is beckoning them to enter. The Blazers chance is right around the corner, but I'm interested to see how they keep all of their young talent in Red and Black.
TBJ: What trade would it take to get Brandon Roy in a Utah Jazz uniform.
BE: Deron Williams. Nothing else would come close. Roy is a near-perfect fit for the Blazers.
TBJ Note: Not. Gonna. Happen. I like Roy. I like him a lot. But you can't put him on the same tier as D-Will. How about a Brewer/Milsap/Collins/Harpring/Price/Knight/Boozer deal?
TBJ: If you could create a Blazers/Jazz Dream Team starting 5. Who would fill what position. Who would be the 6th man (cannot be a starter) and who would be the coach.
BE: Williams, Roy, Kirilenko, Aldridge, Oden. Sixth man is hard to say right now. I like Korver and Millsap but I might be tempted to go with someone like Rudy Fernandez in the long run because he can play multiple positions. I know Jazz fans are going to argue about the Aldridge/Boozer thing but I’m assuming we’re putting a team together for multiple years and Aldridge is going to be an all-around beast in about a season and a half. Plus he complements Oden well. I need someone who can shoot deep and defend the perimeter more than I need another 20-point guy with that backcourt.
TBJ Note: Aldridge? I like him, but doesn't he need to prove himself before starting over a two time All-Star and Gold Medalist? I would say Milsap or Korver because Rudy Fernandez again hasn't proven himself. You're putting him there 100% on "upside". Just agree with you there.
TBJ: Thanks and us Jazz fans look forward to embarrassing your young, inexperienced team ;)
BE: Enjoy it while you can.
Thanks to Dave for taking time out of his absolutely freakishly amazing busy day working on Blazers Edge. That blog has game.
Thursday, October 9, 2008
As the Jazz prepare to play the Suns tonight, we took a quick moment to chat with the #1 Suns blog on the net, Bright Side of The Sun.
1. Who would you rather have leading your team today: Deron Williams or Steve Nash and why?
Today Steve Nash. But tomorrow and from there on Mr. Williams. I like D-Will's game a lot and his make up. And his size. I think we've clearly seen the best from Nash in the rear view mirror. If he's not over used he should have another good year left in him but he's just not the same player that he was. I am hoping that by next year he can come off the bench. Maybe
we can trade him for CP3 in 2010?
2. Who will go down with an injury first (missing 10+ games): AK-47 or Amare
Other then goofy hair and tearful moments there's really nothing I would pick AK-47 over Amare for. Besides, Amare only get's hurt before the season starts. He's actually pretty durable. I am thinking that next year we just sit him out until November.
3. Did the Jazz make a bad decision letting Raja Bell leave as a Free Agent?
Yes. Or maybe not. Tough call. I don't think he's better then Ronnie Brewer right now but I do think he's a perfect Jerry Sloan type guy so I don't know why they let him go.
4. How do you see the season series playing out this year? Last year the Jazz won the series 2-1. Will Deron ever dunk on Shaq?
Do we play this year? Honestly, I haven't given the Jazz much thought. 2-1 sounds good. Or 2-2 perhaps. I think both teams are more focused on their division rivals. You guys need to be watching the Blazers and we will focus on the Lakers. Do we play the Jazz this year?
5. Pretend the Jazz and Suns merge into one team. Who starts at what position and why? Who is the 6th man (cannot be a current starter). Who coaches the team?
You asked me this question last year. Same answer <http://www.truebluejazz.com/2008/03/come-with-us-to-bright-side-of-sun.html>applies except you can move Amare to PF and put Shaq in as Center. I am no longer a Boozer fan and I still would take an old Grant Hill over AK-47. What a waste of contract. Can't you trade him to Moscow for some borsht?
I think a rivalry requires a two way street. I just don't find myself up for the Jazz this year. I think you guys took a step back and so did we.
Editors Note: Allllrighty then. (Insert smiley face with blank stare here). That's fine they feel that way, I mean I didn't even consider the Suns a rival either, ever… in a world. (sniffle sniffle) I mean who would want to be rivals with a team who shares state lines…or is in the same Western Conference… or also has purple in their team color…
So there you go Jazz fans. Thanks to Phx Stan for taking time to chat with us.
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
You probably know them by heart, but I thought it would be a good idea to make sure that everyone knows the phrases to avoid in any semi-serious sports discussion.
- Team X will never win a championship. Really Carnac? You've seen the future? People were saying that about the Red Sox for years, but, lo and behold, they've now won twice in 5 years. This hits home with the Jazz because people were claiming the Jazz would never win a championship after the 2 Finals appearances in '97 and '98. It's ridiculous for obvious reasons, no one knows what moves will be made or what players will get hurt.
- Your team only won because ____________. You're right, we only won because you shot 10-20 from the free throw line, we shouldn't count this game. We only won because your best player had an "off" night, so we'll forget about this game in the win column. Jazz fans should be familiar with this one after last season's playoffs. The Lakers only won because the refs kept Kobe at the free throw line. Well, he's a hell of a player and the Jazz foul a lot, it was going to happen. The Jazz certainly could have overcome it, but the Lakers were just better. THERE, I said it.
- The refs lost us the game. Anyone who still uses this line seriously needs to be hit over the head with something heavy. Even in the Chargers/Broncos game, Denver still had to score and then they went for 2! The Chargers had their chances to stop them. Granted they likely would have been able to just run out the clock had Hochuli made the right call, but it's not like the refs took points off the board or anything. Officials can't put the ball in the hoop, get the ball between the uprights, or get an RBI. Officials miss calls and even make bad calls, deal with it.
- Team/Player X would beat/is better than Team/Player Y from 25 years ago. This one makes me crazy. The '96 Bulls would have beaten the '71 Sixers, it wouldn't even be close. There is no way to calculate how stupid these claims are. How do you measure talent across generations? George Mikan dominated the game in his prime, but so did Chamberlain, Abdul-Jabbar, Jordan, Magic, Bird, O'Neal, Bryant, Williams, etc. It's like saying that Genghis Khan would have beaten Abraham Lincoln in a fist fight (flashbacks to Bill and Ted, anyone?)
- Your team sucks. The most basic of insults. I doubt any other phrase is used more often. I hear this a lot from Jazz haters out here in the Midwest, and it's usually from the less intelligent "fans." If your team is floating around .500 or better, you do not suck. You may be bad defensively or horrible free throw shooters or have no bullpen, but almost any team can win on almost any day, for example: any Jazz road game against a sub .500 team, Warriors over Mavericks, Nuggets over Sonics ('95), Dodgers over Cubs, Red Sox over Yankees ('04), Dolphins over Patriots, and maybe 25% of all games played in all sports in a given season. Your team may have a bad season, but trying reduce an entire season to, "you guys suck" is really an insult to sports in general.
Monday, October 6, 2008
I know its only pre-season and that the games matter about as much as T. Boone Pickens presidential campaign adds do, but I for one am pumped to see some Jazz action again. I can't wait to hear Craig Bolerjack say, "Were coming to you live from..." or to hear Ron Boone say something silly like, " I think the key to winning tonight is to score more points than the opposition". So, before we get the games under way, I want to present my pre-season Jazz team awards.
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
What do the Jazz need to reach that almighty pinnacle of an NBA Championship?
History has shown us that the beard commands attention and power.
Let us take a quick journey together...
The White Wisdom Beard: Moses knew what it would take to have people follow him: A beard (The hand of God helped as well)
The "I'm dead serious" Beard: Brother Brigham led many people through difficult times, knowing that better times were just around the corner.
The "I wish it was real" Beard: Gumdrops and dump trucks. The one beard who has heard almost as many prayers as Jesus.
High Energy Beard: Macho Man knew how to use his beard to harvest his high energy even in to his early 50's.
Been around the Block Beard: ZZ Top knew how to use their beards to become superstars. Even though they never really deserved that title.
"I Pity the Fool" Beard: This vicious combination of Mohawk and beard made us all want to drive a black van with sweet rims.
Funny Beard: Beards that didn't last nearly long enough. Their lives were short, but sweet.
That's right. Release the facial hair. Boozer got us started with his "Bald But Beardy" look during the playoffs last year. Deron followed suit with his "Team USA Serious" beard. Memo showed up to camp with his "A year older and wiser Euro Beard". And last but not least Ronnie is still sporting his High School Sophomore mustache/patchy thing. The only guy left out is AK, which is surprising because with a prominent chin like his, you'd think he do whatever it took to compensate.
I just made Beards cool: You can always raise your game a notch by showing up on a big night with one of these bad boys.
Smart Beard: Apple wouldn't be where it was today if it wasn't for the smartest most inventive beard on the planet.
So if you want to win an NBA championship, what do you do?
Let's break down each player and what beard they need in order to step their game up this season.
Needs Steve Jobs' beard for his brains and ability to adapt.
Needs Santa Claus' beard for his ability to bring out the best in others.
Needs ZZ Tops beard to quit looking like a 17 year old.
Needs honest Abe's beard to keep him true to his position and play some interior D like he is supposed to .
Needs Macho Man Randy Savage's beard to build a fire in him and keep his energy level up the entire season.
Needs a Moses' beard to get a little older and more mature.
Needs one of the 300 beards to get that killer instinct and not give into all the prime time two guards he'll be facing this season.
Needs Honest Abe's beard more than anyone in the league.
Needs Mr. T's beard to help him scare the bejesus out of anyone who steps in front of him in the paint. Ditch the little hook Booz and take it to them hard.
This guy has a little of each of these beards.
Needs a little more Moses' beard to help him make wise decisions and take a game over when needed.
Needs Jim Halpert's beard to help him become the next big thing in the NBA and get in some high profile endorsements.
Needs Conan and Dave's beard to take his interviews a little less serious and let his true funny personality come through.
Needs brother Brigham's beard to help lead Jazz Nation to Zion and the Larry O'Brien trophy.
So there you have it. Put that Barbasol away Jazz men, because we are calling out the Facial Hair Gods to smile on you and take your game to the next level.