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3 Jazz Players Left in Dust of Tectonic Offseason Maneuvers

These Utah Jazz players have to be wondering what their place with the team is moving forward.
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The Utah Jazz are rostering several players that may not get a legitimate opportunity. Jazz executive Danny Ainge seems content with a complete team tear-down and rebuild.

Utah has experienced more than a roller coaster ride of an offseason. The massive maneuvers included trading both Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell away from the Jazz organization.

When traded players are busy adjusting to brand new scenery and acclimating to a new NBA life, former teammates may be rewarded with the opportunity to fill the vacuum created by their departure. But a full-blown rebuild may also omit some remaining players from the revised plan.

Several sources and media outlets have reported additional moves are in store for the current Jazz roster. Bojan Bogdanovic and Jordan Clarkson seemed destined to be traded and not part of the new Jazz movement.

But here are several Jazz players that may not get an opportunity to succeed in the fresh Jazz system due to the nature of the NBA business.

Utah Jazz guard Nickeil Alexander-Walker (6) shoots the ball against Oklahoma City Thunder forward Lindy Waters III (12) during the second half at Vivint Arena. Utah Jazz won 137-101.
Utah Jazz guard Jared Butler (13) looks to pass against LA Clippers guard Terance Mann (14) in the second quarter at Vivint Arena.
Golden State Warriors guard Jordan Poole (3) is fouled by Utah Jazz center Udoka Azubuike (20) while shooting during the first quarter at Vivint Arena.

Jazz Nation will also be familiar with Azubuike as its 2020 first-round pick. When you play behind Gobert, opportunities will be limited, and game minutes will be scarce. 

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Gobert is no longer in a Jazz uniform, yet additional centers and 'potion-less' power forwards have made their way to the roster via Ainge's trades. Most notable is Walker Kessler, also a 2022 first-round pick. Other rostered Jazz players may complete the disappearance of a true opportunity for Azubuike to succeed in this system.

Bottom Line

Each NBA executive has a particular philosophy on how to become an NBA champion. Players sometimes become part of a transition that may or may not welcome them. 

When it comes to the Jazz, there should be a more functional agenda in moving toward team success. NBA personnel will say player movement is part of the business but working together to create an amicable environment is paramount.

The hope is that the young players left in the dust of Utah's tectonic offseason maneuvers will receive a fair look and not have opportunities elude them due to factors outside of their control. With the abundance of corporate moves by Utah, let's hope for a speedy winning recovery.


Follow James on Twitter @jlewNBA.

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