Friday, April 25, 2014
The Blueprints: What the Utah Jazz are trying to build
So far we have taken a look at the foundation of the Utah Jazz and also some of the "Raw Materials" that they have to work with. As stated previously, I feel optimistic with the pieces the Jazz have and what they feel should be the foundation for the organization going forward.
Now lets take a look at the "blueprints" for the Utah Jazz. First off, we should define "blueprints" I would consider the blueprints to be the design or concepts to building this franchise. The blueprints could include certain "materials" and dimensions of "materials" needed to build the structure the Jazz are looking for. It could also provide some instruction and definition as to how those materials and concepts are to be used.
Now that we have an understanding as to what the "blueprints" could or should contain, lets begin to draw the "blueprints" for the Utah Jazz franchise.
To begin, there must be a concept. Everything that this franchise does or will do will be predicated off of a concept. So there are a handful of different concepts out there that the Utah Jazz can look at or adopt. The Jazz can look to be a defensive elite team, a balanced team, an offensive juggernaut and I would say one wild card, that being the superstar conglomerate. There are also subsets to each of these concepts that can give the franchise a more detailed picture or "blueprint" We can classify teams right now that are running each of these concepts. Defensive elites consist of the Chicago Bulls, Indian Pacers, Memphis Grizzlies. The well balanced teams look to be the Golden State Warriors, Portland Trailblazers, Toronto Raptors and everyone's favorite the San Antonio Spurs. Offensive juggernauts look like the Houston Rockets, Los Angles Clippers and believe it or not the Washington Wizards . Then we have our superstar conglomerates consisting of the Miami Heat, Brooklyn Nets and the Knicks tried but failed miserably.
So what concept is the best for the Utah Jazz? While we would all love to be a superstar conglomerate, we know that the market of Utah and the stigma attached will likely never allow for that. So lets just toss that one out now. That leaves us with our 3 main categories. Dennis Lindsey wants defense. Hardcore Jazz fans and those with a knowledge of the game also want defense. The casual fan needs to be entertained so the likely lean towards the offensive side of things. Granted you are never going to make everyone happy but what if you go with a well balanced team? For the Jazz, you end up as the San Antonio Spurs and no one wants to watch you because your boring, slow and do the same thing over and over. The Spurs have been in the playoffs for the the last 17 years! They have competed for championships in better than half of those 17 years. Is that such a bad thing?
Also, look at what is taking place in the playoffs as we speak, the #1 seed Indiana Pacers are down 2-1 to the #8 seed Atlanta Hawks. Indiana is an defensive elite team that can not score the ball! The Houston Rockets, an offensive juggernaut the #4 seed are down 2-0 to the well balanced #5 seed Portland Trailblazers. Teams that are one extreme or the other perform well during the regular season and can stack up wins. When it comes to the playoffs teams have more time to game plan. A balanced team can adjust and change some of their subsets to the concepts that they run and exploit their opponents weaknesses. It is much harder for a team that is offensive or defensive heavy to make those adjustment late in the season or on the fly in a series.
Now where would this concept and the subsets come from? I am going to say two places, the "Engineer and the Foreman" The "Engineer" I would tab as Dennis Lindsey. The "Foreman" would be the coach and staff that are brought in to develop these concepts. What type of foremen is Lindsey looking for? There have been a number of names and possible candidates out there but the hiring process has yet to begin. Also President Randy Rigby mentioned that this will not simply be a Dennis Lindsey hire. He stated that Dennis is looking for input from all parts of the organization. I believe that will be to the benefit of the entire franchise as they narrow down the search. Once the decision is made on who that "foreman" is going to be, will we have a better idea of what direction and what concepts the Utah Jazz are looking to use.
With that said that and the "raw materials" the Utah Jazz have it makes complete sense to choose the concept of a balanced team. The Jazz have defenders in Favors and Gobert. They have offensive spark plugs like Alec Burks Enes Kanter. The also have well balanced players like Gordon Hayward and Trey Burke. I believe if you add that one "superstar" and the correct "foreman" you have the design for a structure that can be extremely successful.