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Utah Jazz: Young guys showed promise in February

If nothing else, we learned in February that the Jazz have a lot of young talent, and could have a bright future. While the young guys aren’t ready for big-time minutes yet, they’ve shown glimpses of greatness. Enes Kanter has been a great rebounder all year, but he’s starting to learn how to score in the paint, play better team defense, and run the floor. He has a motor the never stops, and I’m truly excited to watch him progress.

Alec Burkes is the player that has me most excited. A couple of years ago the Jazz lost Wes Matthews to Portland via free agency. Alec Burkes has the potential to be a better player then Matthews on both ends of the floor. He has the ability to make difficult shots around the basket, and will likely end being on the all NBA defensive team in the future. Once he learns to trust his teammates and develop his outside shot, he’s going to be a great player.

Jeremy Evans doesn’t see much floor time, and probably with good reason right now, but he’s long, athletic, and can jump as he proved in this year’s dunk contest. He’s probably too skinny to bang with most power forwards in the league, but he has a lot of potential.

Jazz Coach Tyrone Corbin has a tough job, and I think he’s done a good job coaching this team. A lot of fans are upset that he’s not giving the young guys enough playing time, but it’s his job to try and win games, and playing Burkes, Kanter, and Favors 35 minutes a game isn’t going to do it. As a fan, I most enjoy watching the younger players, but Jefferson and Millsap are the stars and they are ultimately going to win more games right now. As much as I like Favors and Kanter’s defense and rebounding, they still need players on the floor that can score points.

There is an argument that the Jazz should play the young guys, lose games, and get another good draft pick. It’s been proven time and time again that players that tank for good picks don’t end up being good for very long. The Cavs did it, got Lebron, and then he bolted for Miami so he could play for a winning organization. The Spurs got lucky with Tim Duncan, but they also grabbed Tony Parker and Manu Ginaboli in the second round. Playing winning basketball and putting your best team on the floor is the best way to go.

Ultimately, I think the Jazz have a bright future and already showing glimpses of greatness. In the near future, the Jazz could have multiple all-stars and be back to contending for titles. And don’t count them out just yet – they’re still competing for a playoff spot.

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