Estimated read time: 7-8 minutes
This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.
After the Jazz matched Portland's offer sheet to Paul Millsap, it appears that Carlos Boozer's days in Utah may be numbered. It's clear that after 5 years in Utah that Booz is on the trading block. Rumors are flying everywhere. Boozer to the Bulls. Boozer to Miami. The drama surrounding the Boozer situation escalated last week after his appearance on a Chicago radio station on Tuesday. You can read a transcript of that interview by clicking here.
But we expect any player that's under contract — especially one that decided to opt in — to come and compete.
Here is Kevin O'Connor's response to Boozer's comments: "What I can say is if you're under contract, we're an organization that expects you come and fulfill your contract and play hard. I'm not gonna get into a he-said, she-said kind of thing. But we expect any player that's under contract — especially one that decided to opt in — to come and compete."
Carlos stated during that radio interview he expects the trade to happen very soon but comments like that by O'Connor give reason to believe that may not be the case.
What is the rush?
Unloading Boozer as quickly as possible serves no long term benefit to the franchise. If they can't work a trade with a team that has cap space (Portland or Oklahoma City) they would still have to take back 75 percent in salary and an inferior player. It would only save 3 or 4 million dollars and doesn't solve the luxury tax problem. Are you willing to weaken the roster and take a step back just to get Boozer out of town?
It's not a crazy idea to think that Carlos Boozer will still be a Jazzman when camp starts in October. Remember Andrei Kirilenko's trade demands in 2007? That dramatic summer made for an awkward start to training camp. But after two or three days the drama went away and Andrei is still wearing a Jazz uniform two years later.
Like it or not, the Jazz would be a better team with Carlos Boozer on the roster. The Jazz would get a two time all-star playing for a contract. Boozer would be more motivated than ever. His career is on the line next season. He is one more injury away from becoming Drew Gooden. The Jazz could deal with the initial awkwardness and then reap the benefits of an all-star year from a guy who averages 20 points and 10 rebounds when healthy. At the end of the year they let him walk and shed 12.7 million in payroll with his replacement, Paul Millsap, already in place. Combine the money saved by the expiring contracts of Carlos Boozer, Kyle Korver, and Matt Harpring then the Jazz could possibly become players in the 2010 free agent frenzy. If the team is struggling before the trade deadline then he becomes even more valuable as teams seek large expiring contracts in preparation for the free agent class of 2010.
The point being, if the Jazz do move Boozer, they have plenty of time to wait for the right deal.
Here are 5 more observations from the week in sports.
Video of the Week
I miss college!
Countdown to college football season: 45 days!