After such a disappointing season, the Utah Jazz look to recover for lost time. Expectations for this team had them at least making the conference finals. This is the second year in a row that they’ve experienced a playoffs meltdown. With Gobert being played off the floor in back-to-back years and a weak performance or role players, Utah needs to change something to better their future. Here are some possible routes Utah can take to become the true contender they dream of being.
Massive Changes on the Horizon for the Utah Jazz
Retooling the Utah Jazz
The Utah Jazz have one of the worst defensive schemes in the league. It involves weak perimeter defense and funneling players into the lane so Rudy Gobert can step up. Despite such a weak plan, they have the 10th best defensive rating this season. This is thanks to Gobert, the 3-time Defensive Player of the Year. He makes up for the flaws of his teammates, who struggle to stay in front of anyone.
If the Jazz look for a better future, they need to bring in new role players that will prioritize defense. This should’ve been a glaring hole the past couple of years, as Gobert struggles to hold this defense together in the playoffs. They can look to bring in some underrated cheap defenders in this year’s Free Agency period to bolster this defense. Such players can include Gary Harris, Robert Covington, or Victor Oladipo. They could also look to selling teams in hopes that they would provide a good defender for a limited amount of assets. With the Jazz having their future picks, as well as some interesting young players in Nickeil Alexander-Walker and Jared Butler, they could potentially bring in some quality role players.
The Utah Jazz have one of the older rosters in the league. They lucked out drafting Donovan Mitchell at pick 13 as this kept them from needing to go through a full rebuild after they lost Gordon Hayward. They have kept a lot of their quality role players, but as they age it becomes harder and harder. There is also some obvious conflict between Gobert and Mitchell. This team may need to completely change its roster in order to see future success.
There is a chance this team looks to trade one of its 2 stars. Mitchell will have more value on the market, but he is a lot younger so Utah may look to hold onto him. At 25 they can reset and then build around him for the future. Many teams may also look to take a shot on Gobert and his high defensive upside. Although he has less value, they can use him to get younger quality players.
If they want to try and resolve this conflict, they can always look to trade some of their older players. Players such as Mike Conley, Bojan Bogdanović, and Jordan Clarkson may have good trade value on the open market. They’re getting older and have defensive limitations. If they hope to become a better team, they’ve shown that it’s almost impossible with this current roster.
Utah Jazz’s Future
If the Utah Jazz’s future hopes to improve, Utah has 2 choices. They can either blow it up or retool the roster. The third option of keeping the team the same isn’t an option as it hasn’t worked for years. Utah has a big offseason coming up as they have a lot of moves to make. With the right moves, Utah can reach the expectations they’ve placed on themselves for the past couple of years.
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