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April 13, 2015 Updates

Tony Jones: Jazz trainer Gary Briggs was super insightful, super funny and super emotional today in his retirement presser. Briggs said he won't miss the daily grind, the consistent travel and time away from home. But he will miss the people he's worked with Twitter @Tjonessltrib

It wasn’t anything against the Jazz organization, but rather the logjam of big men it already had in tow. Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap were the established starters. Turkish legend Mehmet Okur was the veteran backup. Derrick Favors, a young talent, had arrived the year before. “They told me to come to Utah for draft practices. I didn’t go to Utah,” he said. “They came to Chicago. And you know how players meet in hotel rooms team to team. I didn’t meet with Utah.” Enes was open about his desire to avoid that situation. He hadn’t played competitive basketball in two years. He couldn’t stomach a third straight season of relative inactiveness. Oklahoman

Utah Jazz Head Athletic Trainer Gary Briggs, who has overseen the team’s training staff for the last 15 seasons, will retire following the conclusion of the 2014-15 NBA campaign. By season’s end, Briggs will have worked 3,013 of a possible 3,014 preseason, regular season and postseason games over his career, which originally began with the Cleveland Cavaliers. He will be recognized during tonight’s final Jazz home game against Dallas. “While we may be losing a valued member of our day-to-day operations, Gary Briggs will forever remain a member of the Jazz family,” said Randy Rigby, president of the Jazz. “We have been very fortunate to have ‘Briggsy’ on our staff these past 15 years. He’s become a valued member of the community and we’ve enjoyed watching his family grow in our state.” NBA.com

April 12, 2015 Updates

Trevor Booker led the way, as the Jazz forward hit 12 of 15 shots and scored a career-high 36 points. Booker, whose previous season high was 17 points, had that beat by the end of the first quarter, in which he scored 19. "Trevor Booker was just amazing. He scored a lot, but he got them in the flow of the game," Utah coach Quin Snyder said. Booker's previous career high was 26 points while playing for Denver in 2011. "Definitely, the win made it feel a lot better. Just one of those nights where I had it going. My teammates did a good job of finding me," Booker said. Deseret News

April 11, 2015 Updates
April 10, 2015 Updates

His varied experience preceding his first appointment to a top job in the world’s most elite league gave him perspective, not only within himself but with what separates his newest position from those in his past. It’s part of why Snyder’s opinion on what makes the NBA so different likely varies from what most popular consensus would be. “I think the capacity that the players have to develop and learn, the speed with which they can pick things up,” Snyder told Basketball Insiders in a sit-down interview. “People perceive talent as athleticism and size and strength, [but] a lot of the ‘talent’ that these guys have is their ability to learn quickly. Show them something, they can do it immediately.” Basketball Insiders

As he mentioned, part of the issue was the group’s adjustment to Snyder’s new scheme. Where former Jazz coach Ty Corbin had Utah’s bigs leap out and “hedge” opposing ball-handlers (often leaving the Jazz in a four-on-three against if the handler was able to thread a pass through the trap), Snyder saw a different fit for his personnel – one that depended in part on each player’s individual attributes. “We do both now – it depends a little bit game to game, it depends on personnel,” he said. “Rudy Gobert is different than Trevor Booker, where Rudy is back more, Trevor’s up because he’s more aggressive. He’s 6’6 and athletic, Rudy’s long and athletic. I think just adjusting to what we have. Dante [Exum] is different in pick-and-roll than Trey [Burke]. So trying to take advantage of some of those various strengths and weaknesses.” Basketball Insiders

“The layers I would probably characterize as situations. We’re basically simulating,” Snyder said, before going into full-on coach-speak. “The easiest example would be sideline pick-and-roll versus middle pick-and-roll, versus Chris Paul and Blake Griffin [running] pick-and-roll in the low post; one-four pick-and-roll versus one-five pick-and-roll. There’s certain players that people specifically will put in pick-and-roll – that happened to us earlier in the year a lot, where people identified a player that they think is not as good defensively and isolate them. So learning how to manage those situations and trying to recreate a specific P&R situation.” Basketball Insiders

April 8, 2015 Updates

Jazz Bear, the creatively named mascot for the Utah Jazz, sustained a painful fall. When this happened is not readily identifiable (even though it’s probably not new, none of us had ever seen it before) — though, since the shot clock reads 35, perhaps it occurred in the 2013 NCAA Tournament? — and neither is the intent. In any event this is at least the third time Jazz Bear’s man parts have taken a beating in his act. That’s dedication to the job. The Big Lead

April 7, 2015 Updates
April 6, 2015 Updates

Even the biggest guy in the building, when he squeezes his massive, 7-foot-4 frame into his seat in a corner of EnergySolutions Arena, has trouble taking his eyes off the biggest guy on the floor. That's right, count Jazz legend Mark Eaton among Gobert's admirers. "I love watching him play," Eaton said of the 7-foot-1 Frenchman. "I love his energy. I love how the crowd reacts. When he blocks a shot, I get pumped up." Salt Lake Tribune

The Utah Jazz announced today that the team has recalled forward Grant Jerrett from the NBA Development League’s Idaho Stampede, the Jazz’s exclusively owned and operated NBA Development League team. Jerrett was assigned to the Stampede on March 26 and their season concluded on April 4. NBA.com

April 4, 2015 Updates

While the major statistical categories are about the same, it’s also worth noting that Burke has limited his turnovers and fouls and that, at times, he seems more in control on the court. He’s the first person to admit that he’s still learning, but he’s optimistic about the progress he’s making since, again, he’s still so young. “I’m much more comfortable,” Burke told Basketball Insiders. “I’m starting to understand the very small things that will help me get to where I want to be in my career. There are some things you don’t understand until you actually experience a year or two in the NBA. One of the main things was the schedule. Going from 30 games to 82 games is a big adjustment for really anyone who’s coming from college to the NBA. That’s something that I’ve definitely learned to cope with.” Basketball Insiders

One topic that has recently been brought up is what should the Jazz do with the lottery pick that they’ll have in the 2015 NBA Draft? As previously stated, they already have so much young talent, so should they try to trade it for a veteran contributor? Or should they use the pick and add another piece to their core? “If I had to make the call, I would probably go best available,” Burke said regarding Utah’s draft pick. “You always want good talent to be a part of your team. [I’d try to take] a guy who loves to compete and at the same time is very talented. That’s probably what I would do.” Basketball Insiders

April 3, 2015 Updates

Josh Pace '05, a key member of Syracuse's 2003 NCAA Championship squad, has decided to retire from professional basketball at the conclusion of the current American Basketball Association (ABA) season. A 6-5 guard-forward, Pace has played professionally all around the world since earning his undergraduate degree from Syracuse in 2005. Pace was not selected in the 2005 NBA Draft but did earn an invitation to play in the NBA Summer League for the Utah Jazz. He did not earn an NBA contract but it 2006 signed with the Nelson Giants of the New Zealand National Basketball League (NBL). He averaged 19.1 points and 6.6 rebounds and was named an NBL All-Star. The following season, Pace was named the league's MVP after helping the Giants to the NBL championship. Syracuse University Athletics

Alex Kennedy: I asked @Trey Burke if he thinks Utah makes playoffs next year. With no hesitation, he said: "West is brutal but we definitely think we can." Twitter @AlexKennedyNBA


Karl Malone and John Stockton are followed by a player whose jersey was just recently retired by the Jazz and another one that gets booed when he returns to Salt Lake City.


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