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Jazz draft VCU's Eric Maynor in 1st round, take Goran Suton in 2nd round



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Read KSL's Take here SALT LAKE CITY -- At 7:28 MT, with the 20th pick, the Jazz took care of their backup point guard needs, going with Virginia Commonwealth's all-time leading scorer and assist man, Eric Maynor. ESPN's expert Chad Ford says, "I thought they might go with Sam Young here, but I have to admit that I love this pick for the Jazz. They needed a backup for Deron Williams, and Maynor is perfect for Utah as one of the most NBA-ready players in the draft. He has a high basketball IQ and great leadership qualities. The Jazz fill a need and get a guy that I think is the most underrated player in the draft."

Maynor just turned 22 two weeks ago. He averaged 22.4 points and 6.2 assists as a senior and helped lead VCU to the NCAA Tournament for the second time in three years. Back in 2007, Maynor hit the game-winning 15-footer as the Rams upset Duke in the first round.

Maynor actually came in to Salt Lake City Wednesday, but back spasms prevented him from working out for the Jazz.

Maynor says he's excited to be a Jazzman and describes his game as "...a true point guard, a great leader. I think I'll be able to come in there and do whatever it is the team needs me to do. With Deron Williams playing without the ball sometimes, I've watched that, for me to be out there with him, that's going to be great."

Jazz head coach Jerry Sloan met Maynor Wednesday and was impressed.

"He was in here yesterday. We visited with him. He seemed to have a pretty good handle on the game of basketball," Sloan said.

Coach Sloan's early advice to the rookie? "I think he's got to work on his body number one. That's the first thing he's got to do, get into the weight room and get stronger. He seems to have a pretty good idea how to find people on the floor, how to run an offense. When you ask him questions about pick and roll situations he seems to have a pretty good grasp of it," Sloan said.

Jazz General Manager Kevin O'Connor says Maynor should fill the Jazz back-up point guard void and then some.

"He's a legitimate point guard. He's got good size, thin but has good size. He sees the floor well, and each year he got better and dominated the conference he was in (Colonial Athletic Association). He's proven himself on the big stage," O'Connor said. [CLICK HERE to read more about Eric Maynor]

In the second round, with the No. 50 pick overall, the Jazz got Michigan State's skilled big man Goran Suton.

"I liked Suton at Michigan State, but he's sort of like Kosta Koufos, and I'm not sure he'll actually play for the Jazz for a while. Look for him to go play in Europe for a few years," Ford said.

O'Connor said, "He's a tough kid, runs the floor pretty well. He's not a real jumper but he does a lot of little things. And of course he helped his team get to the National Championship game."

While ESPN's Chad Ford thinks Suton, a Bosnian, will end up developing for the Jazz while playing in Europe, O'Connor says maybe not. "There's certainly that chance. That's not the reason we drafted him, but there is that chance," he said. [CLICK HERE to read more about Goran Suton]

Both Maynor and Suton will be introduced at a press conference at the Zions Bank Basketball Center at 3 p.m. Friday.

E-mail: tkirkland@ksl.com

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Tom Kirkland Sports Director

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