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Utah Jazz: Is Paul Millsap ready for his potential new role?

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  • Duds
    May 15, 2010 2:20 a.m.

    Milsap is capable of taking Boozer's spot as a starter when he leaves. However, it all depends on who get to help in the middle. If we can fill the 5 spot with a trade, or a combination of Fes and big rookie like Aldrich.....Milsap will have room to operate. It all boils down to the offensive scheme to allow the easier baskets to be made. Milsap thrives consistent physical basketball, and a good 5 to work with him on the floor would allow him to put up Boozer like numbers........but actually will play defense.

  • An Asian Perspective
    May 15, 2010 3:29 a.m.

    Millsap played significantly better against Lakers than Boozer. If having two undersized PFs is an issue, just let Boozer go.

    Boozer is one of the best "offensive" PF. He can finish around the rim with both hands and he's got high arching jumpers. He's one of the better defensive rebounder. However, he's a terrible defender especially off the ball. I just cannot remember Booz taking a charge sacrificing his body. No shot blocking at all. He sometimes shows active hands stripping the ball away, but that's an indication of a bad defender moving hands more actively than feet.

    Millsap is a better package and he's a smarter player than Boozer. While Boozer was trying the same way he attacks Golden State against LA for 3 playoff series, Millap obviously made adjustments; he leant his body against defense to create some space for a layup; he owned Gasol once he's 15 ft away from basket with his quick move and pump fake. He can also hit mid-range jumpers.

    Plus, once Boozer is gone, Jazz can finally play AK at PF, his natural position, in which he once flourished as a 5*5 guy.

  • Jazz Cop
    May 15, 2010 7:30 a.m.

    Agree, a center that controls the paint would be a huge bonus for either millsap or boozer, hey, i heard we extended okur for two years, sloan thinks okur is going to hold down the paint, he loves that seven footer putting up threes while the interior d gets overlooked, not mentioned, hey, millsap had no experience but he became a player because of playing time, sloan has to give the younger players a chance to learn, to get better too. he can get away with millsap at pw fwd and at the savings that millsap represents over boozer it seems like you got to let boozer go and bring up some young players to fill in the backup roles, how long has kouf been on the team, next year will be his third year, he'd be a senior had he stayed in school, he can make a difference next year and he could develope into a decent pw fwrd, who scores and plays d, and he has the natural size.

  • Doug10
    May 15, 2010 9:06 a.m.

    Paul is a great guy but in the second paragraph of this article he was correctly as a backup PF. He plays his best minutes there. Don't try to fit a square peg in a round hole.

    Other talk about Koufos and Fes being able to play more is beyond reason. Denver was disorganized and so big Fes was able to cause them to hiccup. Lakers did not even notice we had a 7 footer starting or playing against them. They are like kids among men. For all their practice time neither has an offensive move to fool an 8th grader.

    There are no softer 7 footer in the league than Koufos and Fes who says he wants to play cannot hit a foul shot. Imagine all the time Fes has spent in the gym and being that dreadful at the foul line.

    Those guys belong on the bench until they prove themselves, then Sloan will give them the minutes they deserve, until then they are huge liabilities.

  • jp3
    May 15, 2010 9:55 a.m.

    Whoever mentioned getting Aldrich in the draft--are you out of your freaking mind? Do we really need FOUR unathletic centers on the same team? That would be beyond a joke. Get rid of Fes and Koufos, draft an athletic big man, and sign another--I'd take the backup center on ANY team to start for us rather than our centers who wouldn't even make the roster of another NBA team (Memo is not a center--centers don't spot up at the 3-point line all game and hoist the long ball).

  • Bugoff
    May 15, 2010 12:03 p.m.

    The Jazz have several major problems.

    One is that they have the 2 best undersized PFs in the NBA. That redundancy does not allow the Jazz to maximize it's potential with the money they are paying them.

    Neither of them can beat LA. Millsap actually may be better against the LA bigs but is still to short.

    The Jazz resigned Millsap thinking Booz was already gone. Okur's injury has raised big questions about losing Booz.

    It is far better to take the next step and replace Booz with Millsap, draft a tall PF and make adjustments at the SF and SG positions to offset the loss of Boozer offense.

    Get a PF with the NY pick. Buy another 1st round pick and get an NBA ready SF.

    CJ can add fire power to SG and AK can back up Millsap at PF until the New CBA is in place.

    When the new rules are clear they can figure out what to do with AK's 17 mill in salary.

    There is 29 mill in salary (Booz/AK) that can be used to rebuild this team right.

    Build a championship team NOW. Win it all in the future.

  • Large Tuna
    May 15, 2010 1:23 p.m.

    I agree with jp3. Find a backup center through trade, draft a PF. They dont have to be the best center in the world, which is everyone's automatic argument about obtaining a center (everyone meaning all of the idiots on the local radio stations). we can draft a PF. Remember AK's contract is up next year, so while he can backup milsap now, he may not be here next year so its better to find a replacement for him now than later when we're at #20 pick in the draft again. Portland has a logjam at the C spot with Oden, Przybilla, Camby, Aldridge, and Howard. Maybe talk to that team? I'm thinking more Przybilla/Howard, which like i said isnt the dream trade, but the Jazz doesnt have much money to work with anyway, so we're not going to get one of their starters, its that simple.

  • louisiana jazz man
    May 15, 2010 1:54 p.m.

    if everybody said its not working with boz and millsap" wich i disagree" don"t see the debate. they dont have money to sign the rest of the players what alone boz. millsap 6 mil boz probly wants 15. does anybody see a differance of 9 mil between them ? if they traded millsap to keep boz everybody would relize millsap was the one probly worth the 15 and boz the 6



  • scott_px@yahoo.com
    May 15, 2010 2:01 p.m.

    We need to keep Boozer and draft a 6-10 to 7-1 player since this is the best draft. Hopefully Fesenko can develop, he showed dominance against Denver at times. Milsap could fill in as a starter but we need both him and Carlos.

  • netmaster
    May 15, 2010 2:48 p.m.

    Probably nobody would agree with me at first glance, but here's what I would do to improve the Jazz.

    Trade Williams. He is known as the best point guard in the league, which means we could get one to three good players for him directly or indirectly. I think Williams could be replaced. It would be very difficult to replace Boozer. Last year I was ready to dump him because he played so badly on defense that it was like trying to net a fish with a huge hole in the net. But since Sloan started grading players on every defensive play after every game, Boozer finally saw what he was doing wrong and improved immensely. I anticipate that he will continue to improve. He needs to trust his teammates more on defense, but he would be hard to replace.

    If we had a big body or two who could compete with the Lakers, we would have a chance of getting into the finals again.

    Except for the L.A. games, the Jazz lost for two reasons: Either the opponent got really hot from three-point range, or individual players tried to do too much on their own.

  • jefff
    May 15, 2010 3:42 p.m.

    i trust Mansap as a good starter, we lost something on O but we add a lot on D, we can run a bit more and if he continues to improve (i expect it)with the shot, we'll open the paint for all the swigmen we have. At the 5, i m satisfied with Memo Fes and Koufos, at the 4 we can play ak, but we'll miss his energy from the paint. So add, via trade, FA or draft, someone who can bring energy from the bench and fill the 4 spot.

  • byronbca
    May 15, 2010 3:58 p.m.

    The real question isn't, is Milsap ready? It's who's going to take over Milsap's position?

    I do see SOME potential in our young bigs. I think Fes is capable of giving 15 quality minutes most nights. There was obvious improvement in his game over the last year and if he can continue to improve and maybe learn how to catch...?

    Koufos was a little disappointing last year, but he's still 7'1" 265 and can shoot a little bit plus no one has ever questioned his work ethic. He's still only 21 so there's at least hope.

    And don't forget about 7'2" Ante Tomic. In 09 he won Adriatic player of the year, and this year he is 1 of 5 players up for the top European league's version of rookie of the year. He's also put on 20 pounds. You can see for yourself how good he looks on youtube. But he won't be available until 2011.

    The Jazz' most practical option might be to save their money this year, develop their bigs, and go after someone next year when they have the money.

  • Bugoff
    May 15, 2010 4:10 p.m.

    Net Master DWill could be traded if you got lucky and got Wall in the draft or some other great PG.

    However, it makes more sense to move AKs expiring contract before the tade deadline.

    The wild cards are how much Fes and Mathews will cost? Will Okur be back by the trade deadline and how will he play?

    How much will Booz cost and will he demand 6 years?

    I personally think they should rebuild and trade Booz or let him walk. Expiring contracts are worth money because that free up assests and gives you options.

    It is time to utilize some options.

    Fes may not be back as he just hired a rouge agent.

    Koufos may be the starting C. The Jazz can not bring Booz back and get an experienced C who is worth anything. They could get Mikki Moore or another old Vet but the Jazz would not win.

    The Jazz will be tempted to bring Booz back to play small ball with Booz at C. We already know that will not win in the playoffs.

    The Booz contract will kill the Jazz when he gets injured or in 2013 and beyond (old).

  • the truth
    May 15, 2010 6:44 p.m.

    What people can not seem to get through theor heads,

    is sloan so dependent on his PG/PF centered system,

    and has so much disdain for the other positions, that they are an afterthought,


    that no matter who plays PF,

    boozer, milsap, or AK,


    nothing will change.


    Until you change the coach and system
    until you get the right players,

    nothing will change.

  • toddfromsantaana
    May 15, 2010 6:45 p.m.

    Some good takes, many clueless. Mikki Moore? What is this attraction, ah washed up...

    If the Jazz had a defensive center they can acquire free agency let us say, who can block shots (Haywood),then maybe you can try and resign Doozie. Otherwise, let him go, trade Kirilenko encourage Joysey to take him, throw them a the latter 1st round pick, some caviar maybe get Devin Harris being Lopez would not likely get dealt.

    I keep Wes but I think we need an impact#2 guard, Maybe Milwaukee would take Kirilenko and we can come back with Salmons.

    Keep Fes (i doubt they will) try and acquire another big by free agency or draft a high impact guy like Monroe who can contribute right away. I still think Okafor (has big contract) can be a player with the right team and get his game back, he is moody but healthy and right mentally, he is the perfect person for the Jazz

  • toddfromsantaana
    May 15, 2010 6:50 p.m.

    All this talk about the Jazz and what they should do. The mostly likely scenario is the majority of the same team comes back. Little if any change as O connor and Sloan and his "sloanaholics" demand the same team back. the "sloanaholics" would not support much change as the worry is they will stop going to the games. They likely will stay home if Avery or Laimbeer came in if Jer would quit, feeling they have rings. They prefer to remain the "small market underdog and do things the right way"


    The fans are not interested in winning they just want to win some games and be entertained

  • toddfromsantaana
    May 15, 2010 6:54 p.m.

    The Truth:

    could not have said it better everyone loves "Jer"

    Doug likes Okurrie to man center and Booz together. He loves Sloan and his defensive philosophy

    The "Sloanaholics" love the 3 point defense and feels we can win every game 110-109 or higher, that defense does not matter...

  • Henry Drummond
    May 15, 2010 7:30 p.m.

    I think Paul is ready. He is also better on defense than Boozer ever was. I also get the impression he actually wants to me here rather than thinking he's doing everyone a favor by being here.

    I love the picture of Paul by August Miller in the Gallery. You should frame it and put a caption under it that says "Don't go in the lane" :)

  • Captain L
    May 15, 2010 7:31 p.m.

    Re Byronbca : I like your comments, the Jazz need to move on without Booz, Milsap and a combination of AK, KK & Okur can man the 4.
    Draft Udoh or Monroe , have Tomic come over in 20ll.
    Decide what they want to do with AK when his contract expires, sign him for much less or trade him and get a young player to play the 3, that can shoot and play tough D to take his place.
    It frustrate me to hear that Fes has hired an agent that is difficult to work with. That will only slow his progress and like Bugoff said may mean he plays somewhere else next year. Bummer.
    It is too bad we don't have a top 5 pick in the second round, there could be at least a decent 3 available that early in the second round.

  • Jazz Cop
    May 15, 2010 8:14 p.m.

    doug10-i haven't corrected you but here we go, you say that you seem to think fes and kouf can't get better, and you still call yourself a jazz fan? haha.
    you forget, dwill, he makes every one better, you don't think dwill can't get fesenko 6-8 garbage points a game and make him at the least a consideration?

  • Jazz Cop
    May 15, 2010 8:35 p.m.

    btw, lets hope millsap hasn't forgot how to rebound, primarily thats his job, if you look at the photo in the gallery it shows he has been focusing on his improved offense, but at times he looked like he forogt how to rebound or defned.

  • Mr Adams
    May 15, 2010 8:42 p.m.

    If I remember right when Milsap signed the deal with Portland he wasn't going to be a starter there. He was signing to be a backup. If he was looking to be a starter he should have taken less money somewhere else or take a one year deal with the Jazz so he could have been an unrestricted free agent the following year. But it was all about the money so he signed his backup power foward deal and that is just what he is getting. He has to live with it if the Jazz go for a "better" power forward.

  • LKA
    May 15, 2010 9:36 p.m.

    Fess and Koufus will never be starting quality players. Sap gives all he has and then some. You can never have too many bigs. ( unless two of them are Koufus and Fess.)

  • Bugoff
    May 15, 2010 9:49 p.m.

    Sloan is fully capable of running the Flex thru the C, SG or SF if he wants to. There are plenty of plays and options in plays that can be run in that system for the other positions.

    In theory any play you run for the PF could be run for the SF. Just reverse it. That is why I advocated a 6'10" tweener going against shorter SFs on the weak side (strong side with play reversed). That is why a Durant type player would make them a contender.

    Millsap will be fine if he gets his minutes.

    You can get an early 2nd round pick for about 1 mill (last years price). There are multiple teams with multiple 1st round picks. They do not want all of those guaranteed contracts. The Jazz can get a really good SF at about 20, 1st round.

    Haywood is interesting but he makes 6 mill and UT can only offer 5.5 mill of MLE. If DAL does not resign him and he can't get more else where then maybe? He is good for 8 and 8 in 30 minutes but is as big as Fes.

  • Bugoff
    May 15, 2010 9:58 p.m.

    Millsap can do well as an undersized PF if he develops his outside mid range shots some more. Both KG and Dirk (neither undersized) are more mid range PFs than bangers.

    Millsap is quick enough and explosive enough he can attack the trees. They can shoot over him and Booz so that is the big problem.

    Millsap will get better. Booz draws double teams and is a true top 5 PF maybe top 2 on offense.

    We know the Booz/Millsap small ball will not contend. They can beat weak teams and make the playoffs? They can not carry the team.

    Take time and get the ideal player for each position in the Flex. Unless Sloan dies he is not going anywhere.

    Build the ideal Flex team and contend.

    Stop putting flawed projects into 3 or 4 positions. You can't contend that way.

    DWill is the only ideal player for his position. Every other position has weaknesses that can be and are exploited.

    Get the right players with the right talent and stop running a basketball development school.

    The 2nd rounders have flaws. AK and DWill are first rounders and they match their positions best.

  • Bugoff
    May 15, 2010 10:07 p.m.

    The management philosophies of the Jazz have produced a low level playoff team that pays the lux tax.

    Some of those philosophies and practices have to change.

    Dumpster diving for players will not get you the level of talent needed to contend. The continuity bias of retaining good but not great (flawed) players insures that you will not contend but will pay more in the long run than if you just got the right player for each position.

    Dumpster diving is fine for cheap back ups.

    Get enough talent and the right players. Stop plugging in quick fixes and max the capability of the flex and the D.

  • B Russ
    May 16, 2010 7:56 a.m.

    @ Todd

    " Doug likes Boozer and Okur defending in the paint "

    Best line of the day Todd. Funny stuff.

  • dwillfan
    May 16, 2010 10:42 a.m.

    i have to agree, to an extent, with bryonbca on saving money this year and going after someone next year when the money's there. in the meantime, we need to work on developing koufus (because we all know fes' agent will demand more than his worth). keep in mind that koufus was assigned to the d-league, twice, before returning to the jazz, that plays havoc on one's mind, especially someone as young as him (he's only 21). he starts to doubt his abilities and potential.

    he needs a lot more playing time. period. the one good thing about him, however, is his aggressiveness. there are only three other players on the jazz with that mentality — millsap, matthews and dwill.

    we're guaranteed a top pick in the draft, where we'll most likely get a big man...so maybe we move ak's expiring contract and pick up another sg/pf combo?

  • dwillfan
    May 16, 2010 10:46 a.m.

    keep in mind that koufus averaged 17 points and 8 boards with the utah flash. he can easily develop into a solid center/pf that would definitely give us more height when we match up with the lakers in next year playoffs. :)

    whatever o'conner decides, he better do it with dwill's best interest. come 2012, dwill is a free agent.

  • toddfromsantaana
    May 16, 2010 1:02 p.m.

    dwillfan

    that works for me, then if I can for Salmons I will be ripped for that also because I say what is on my mind

  • B Russ
    May 16, 2010 2:22 p.m.

    I believe that from now until next years playoffs that Fes and Koufos should get all the playing time they can get. Summer leagues, national leagues, pre season, regular season the whole bit. They need to be utilized. Koufos with playing time can make up for Boozers rebounding. Fes keeps people from even wanting to go into the paint. They will also make Milsap more effective.

  • LKA
    May 16, 2010 4:40 p.m.

    @dwillfan. Keep in mind what Almond Joy did in the D-Leauge. Why do you think he is not somewhere in the NBA today. Greatness in the D-League is JR. High.

  • JFFR
    May 17, 2010 7:41 a.m.

    Since when is 6'9, 266 undersized as a power forward?

    Karl Malone was 6'9, 256 and no one complained about his being "undersized." I recognize the league has a few 7-footers playing power forward now, but if you get a legit defensive center, I think everyone will stop talking about Boozer being "undersized."

    ------------
    Everyone talks about Boozer not being able to handle the Laker's height and length. It's not true. Booze punishes tall guys all the time. His rookie year big Z was his practice buddy and he learned how to score of 7'3 guys. Do you remember Booze dropping 40 on Yao Ming. Look up Yao Ming says he wants to Kill Boozer on You Tube :)

    Booze can take it to tall/long guys. It's the fact that Gasol, Bynum, and Odom are quick that gives Boozer fits. His feet are too slow (same reason he isn't the greatest defender.)