Revisiting the Utah Jazz’s rebuild after a fast start to the season and NBA Trade Deadline moves.
Now that the NBA trade deadline has come and gone, it’s time to see what Danny Ainge is up to in Utah. The Utah Jazz was not as active as expected at the NBA Trade Deadline, making just one trade with Los Angeles and Minnesota. Although it was just one trade, it had an effect on Jazz nation as they saw some of their favorite players depart.
Malik Beasley and Jared Vanderbilt were moved to the Lakers while Mike Conley and Nickeil Alexander-Walker were shipped to Minnesota, in return the Jazz acquired the Lakers’ 2027 first-round pick, lightly protected. The protection on the pick is 1-4, meaning if the pick falls between those selections it will be returned to Los Angeles and Utah would be compensated with second-round picks.
First-round picks were hard to come by at this year’s trade deadline, with just eight of them being moved. Danny Ainge clearly saw a move that would benefit the Jazz down the road, and I believe that’s why he made the deal. Jazz fans grew to love Conley and were just getting to know Beasley and Vanderbilt, but the value of those three together in a trade was too good to pass on.
Some Jazz fans questioned Ainge’s move, especially when Utah acquired Russell Westbrook from Los Angeles, absorbing his large contract for the remainder of the season. So what is Danny’s plan?