It feels just like the Utah Jazz, now entering their fourth full season since the Deron Williams trade altered the roster’s frame, should have taken the proverbial next measure by now.
Derrick Favors should have morphed to a elite warden of this paint, Enes Kanter should have turned into a consistent starter and Gordon Hayward–he of the hefty four-year, $63 million contract–should be knocking on stardom’s doorway. Instead, the improvements are marginal, the advancement fraught with setbacks.
Fortunately, another wave of talent is ready to overtake the one that showed up soon after the Williams deal. Frenchman Rudy Gobert could turn into the following Roy Hibbert, and Dante Exum could be the next superstar of Utah.
Or, both might struggle through the same suits and starts as Favors, Kanter and Hayward. You can never be sure.
1 reassuring certainty: Alec Burks is a bad guy. Along with me scare.
If Tyrone Corbin was hindering advancement, perhaps his dismissal will alter things. New head coach Quin Snyder has proven some innovative touches during the preseason, and the Jazz are becoming better appearances. Even though they’re still shooting roughly 19 threes per game (directly across the amount they shot last year), they rank first among all preseason squads in long-distance precision with a cool 37.1 percent.
The second wave of the youth movement starts this year. There will be no name talk, and even the drama are a pipe dream. But there’s no shortage of potential.