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Tag:Jerry Sloan
Posted on: October 21, 2010 7:03 pm
Edited on: August 14, 2011 7:57 pm
 

Sad to see Sundiata Gaines go

Sundiata Gaines, perhaps the D-League's greatest success story, was waived by the Utah Jazz today. Posted by Ben Golliver

Brian T. Smith of the Salt Lake Tribune reports that the Utah Jazz have cut four players today to trim their roster down to 13 players, choosing to go forward with less than the roster maximum of 15 players so they can cut down on their luxury tax bill.
The Jazz waived Othyus Jeffers, Sundiata Gaines, Ryan Thompson and Demetris Nichols on Thursday. "It's a part of the job. It's just the nature of the business," Jazz coach Jerry Sloan said. "We can't mope around about it for two or three days. You've got to go back and go to work."
One of those names surely hurts to read more than the others for Jazz fans: point guard Sundiata Gaines.   Gaines made a blip on the national radar last year when the phone call of his midseason call up from the D League's Idaho Stampede to the Jazz was videotaped and uploaded to the internet.  Soon after, Gaines became a household name nationally by hitting arguably the best shot of the 2009-2010 season, a last-second three-pointer to defeat LeBron James's Cleveland Cavaliers.   Given today's circumstances, it's worth another look. Immediately after Gaines made his Magic, the usually reserved Sloan told reporters that he would sign Gaines, who was playing on a non-guaranteed 10-day contract when he buried the Cavs, for the rest of the season. Ten months later, Sloan tells reporters that it's a business and that he won't mope about it. If that doesn't sum up how precarious life in the NBA can be, nothing will.
Posted on: October 15, 2010 11:03 pm
Edited on: October 15, 2010 11:05 pm
 

Lamar Odom sees hypocrisy in technical crackdown

Los Angeles Lakers forward Lamar Odom sees hypocrisy in the NBA's marketing of emotion and its recent technical fouls crackdown. Posted by Ben Golliver.

CBS Sports's Ken Berger has carefully charted the back-and-forth between the players, the players union and the league office over the NBA's decision to crackdown on complaining and the rash of technical fouls that has resulted. Berger writes that the league is, so far, unyielding on its new policy to punish emotional reactions to foul calls.

Los Angeles Lakers forward Lamar Odom has opened up a new line of attack against the crackdown. In a piece by Dave McMenamin of ESPNLosAngeles.com, Odom goes after the league's long-standing marketing of emotion, arguing that David Stern and company are engaging in a bit of hypocrisy when they crack down on something they've previously promoted.

"It's kind of crazy because that's what people love to see. You watch the commercials and the NBA has dunking, [players making] faces and 'Where Amazing Happens,'" Odom said. "Now it's like 'Where Normal Happens.' ... There's nothing amazing about not showing emotion."

Odom has a point. Both Jerry Sloan and Marcus Camby could probably be whistled for technicals in this "Where Amazing Happens" spot.




Odom's argument is interesting because it leads to another, related conclusion: emotional complaining isn't just embedded in the league's commercials, it's fully embedded in the game. To conceive of an NBA without regular back-and-forth between players and officials is to imagine a totally different reality. 

In the end, this is starting to reek of an idea that sounds far better in the boardroom that it looks on the court. While no one should expect the NBA to roll over in the face of this new wave of player criticism, it's hard to believe that, a month from now, the two sides won't have reached a compromise.
Posted on: September 24, 2010 1:32 am
 

Preseason Primer: Utah Jazz

Posted by Matt Moore
 
Losing your second best player to free agency should be the kind of thing that sets your franchise back coniderably (don't tell the Suns). But the Utah Jazz, the model of consistency in the NBA since Jerry Sloan took over back in the Paleozoic Era, they just keep plugging right along. Making smart, well-reasoned decisions have led them to replacing Carlos Boozer with Al Jefferson. The question is if they can pick up where they left off. And that's where we begin the latest of our Preseason Primers with the Utah Jazz.

Training camp site: Salt Lake City, Utah

Training camp starts: September 28th

Key additions: Al Jefferson (trade), Raja Bell (free agency), Francisco Elson (free agency)

Key subtractions: Carlos Boozer (free agency), Kyle Korver (free agency), Wesley Matthews (free agency), Kosta Koufos (traded)

Likely starting lineup: Deron Williams (PG), C.J. Miles (SG), Andrei Kirilenko (SF), Al Jefferson (PF), Mehmet Okur (C)

Player to watch: Paul Millsap. Al Jefferson was brought in to replace Carlos Boozer, after Paul Millsap was given a huge new contract to replace Boozer. Now that Jefferson has arrived, Millsap finds himself in one of two positions entering camp. He either needs to battle on the glass and play "big" enough to prove he can play in tandem with Jefferson, or he needs to detonate to a degree where Sloan has a legitimate quandray on his hands between the two. Under the right circumstances, either is possible, though neither is likely.


Chemistry quiz: This really all comes down to Jefferson. Deron Williams is still the floor general, and many of the Jazz players have been there for years. Jefferson faces tremendous pressure not only to make an impact immediately, but to work in tandem with Deron Williams and commit himself to Sloan's defensive principles. The Jazz aren't exactly a superstar-centric team, and Jefferson has to prove he can fit that model from the get-go.


Camp battles: Outside of the aforementioned Millsap-Jefferson rumble, shooting guard should be lively. Raja Bell has had enough time off to be completely healthy, but he's got a lot of miles on those wheels. C.J. Miles has a fresher set of treads, but he's also maddeningly inconsistent.

Injury issues:
Deron Williams was severely banged up at the end of last season, so keeping him in the best health possible is top priority. Mehmet Okur may or may not be available by start of the season, so that will be the biggest injury to keep an eye on. The Jazz have been banged up in general over the past few years, and that's before you factor in the knee problems of Al Jefferson. Keep the tape handy, trainer man.

Biggest strength: Versatility. The Jazz have the ability to get up the floor, to slow it down when need be, to work out of the post to an improved degree, and to hit from the perimeter. They play solid defense and can compete with anyone. Those elements shouldn't shift much with the new additions.

Glaring weakness: Cohesiveness. The Jazz have mostly had positive runs over the past six years, but the lows tend to be really low. Jerry Sloan will need to work with what is now a younger team to develop consistency. Additionally, while the Jazz have been very good, they've lacked a ceiling of great. That's the level they need to get to if they want to contend in the West.
Posted on: September 8, 2010 4:20 pm
Edited on: September 8, 2010 5:17 pm
 

NBA F&R Interview: Carlos Boozer wants one back

The Bulls newest star talks about Jerry Sloan, championship dreams, and the one game he wants another crack at. Posted by Matt Moore



Carlos Boozer has taken his new role as a leader of the Bulls by the horns. (What? Why are you looking at me like that? Is there some sort of pun in play? Hmm?) He's been vocal about setting high expectations for the team, has been a visible presence in his new city, and is putting himself forward as the new cornerstone of the franchise beside Derrick Rose. This weekend, he's the guest commissioner at Gatorade's Replay Series Season 3 event, which features two teams replaying a game which ended in a shroud of controversy, something Boozer's been no stranger to in his career and that he continues with his championship goal declarations in Chicago. CBSSports.com spoke with Boozer today about what stands in the way of that goal, going from small market Salt Lake City to big city Chicago, his time with Jerry Sloan, and the one game he wants back. 

Matt Moore: You got a lot of publicity for your comment about competing for a championship. What's going to be the biggest challenge in pursuit of that goal you're setting?

Carlos Boozer: That's what we play for, every NBA player. I'm very vocal about it. I want a ring, and my teammates want a ring. I think the biggest challenge will be coming together with our team chemistry. We also need to work to be a good, consistent defensive team. Also, continuing to see how we respond when we have a couple losses or if we're up and down. Can we fight back up and have that courage and confidence to keep going? In playoffs, we need to see how we fight back in a series. We'll learn a lot about our team, but the goal has to be a championship. That's what we all work for.

MM: Have you already noticed a huge change in going from a small market like Utah to Chicago?

CB: Oh, yeah, it's a lot different. I think I've been able to work my butt off and become a good player. The media coverage is a lot more intense than Salt Lake City. It's great, though, this is a great sports town, with the Blackhawks, the White Sox, the Cubs, the Bears, and obviously the Bulls. I'm looking forward to being a part of it. 

MM: What's the biggest thing you'll take away from your time with Coach Sloan?

CB: Everything. He was phenomenal for me. He called and I talked to him just last week. He was able to turn our team into a contender, even without Karl Malone and Stockton. He really managed the transition of that team to the current one. I think after the Malone era, they were looking for an identity, and we came in and turned that into a contender. He really helped bridge the gap between the Karl Malone era to the early 2000's and 2010's. It's a tribute to him and his coaching that his teams have that kind of consistent success. 

MM: Gatorade is allowing teams to go back and have another shot to replay their greatest wins and most bitter defeats. What game do you want back?

CB: The great thing about this is, Gatorade's been able to give guys games we want to replay. For me, the game against Indiana, when I was a junior in college, what turned out to be my last game at Duke. In Rupp Arena, we were in the Sweet 16 against Indiana. There was a kid had seven 3s in second half, named Tom Coverdale. We were down by 4 at the end, and my teammate Jay Williams hit a three, and got fouled. I grabbed the rebound, went up between two Hoosiers, both of which were grabbing my arms. I thought I got fouled, there was no call, I missed the shot and we lost the game. I wish I could have that one back. There are a lot of games that stand out. This gives them a chance to replay it, especially the two teams playing on Friday. There was a tip at the buzzer, and one feels it was before the buzzer and the other after.

These guys have been training for 8 weeks. They've met with nutrition specialists, and have been going to the Gatorade Sport Science Institute . I'm an honorary commissioner for the game, and I'm looking forward to it. It's fun to be a part of it.

MM: You've got Noah down low, Rose has been working on his three-point shot, and you added Kyle who you've played with. How do you like the balance on this team?

CB: We've got a lot of balance, a lot of depth. I think up front, I think Joakim and I have a chance of being a more dynamic frontcourt, along with Kurt Thomas. In the backcourt, Derrick Rose is one of the more dynamic scorers in the league. We've got Ronnie Brewer and Kyle Korver, who you mentioned for defense and shooting. I think we'll be better than what a lot of people think. We have Luol Deng on the wing, which is great to have. But we have to go earn our respect. With the talent that we have, and the hunger we have, I think we're ready to really push for a championship.

Thanks to Carlos for his time and Gatorade for its assistance with this interview.


 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com