Rumor: Utah Jazz Could Trade Derrick Favors To Pursue Millsap


Jan 5, 2015; Salt Lake City, UT, USA; Utah Jazz forward Derrick Favors (15) controls the ball during the first quarter against the Indiana Pacers at EnergySolutions Arena. Mandatory Credit: Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

Draft Day can be a crazy time for sports fans. Every year, trade rumors and conspiracy theories abound in the hours leading up to the event; in this regard, the 2015 NBA Draft is no different. The Utah Jazz have been the subject of such rumors with talk of Trey Burke potentially being on the move. Strangely, reports of the team’s willingness to deal Derrick Favors have also been making waves.

Favors has been a defensive anchor for the Jazz and his developing offensive game in coach Quin Snyder’s system was a boon for the team last season. Some would even go so far as to say that Favors is a potential All-Star in the league, even in a loaded Western Conference.

Nonetheless, a source tells Jody Genessy of the Deseret News that GM Dennis Lindsey could move the talented forward in favor of chasing former Jazzman Paul Millsap in free agency–

As Genessy and others have stated, the chatter usually doesn’t mean that deals are imminent and everything should be taken as rumor until it actually happens. Moreover, one can’t help but wonder about the logic at work in a potential Favors trade or Millsap signing.

Rudy Gobert‘s presence notwithstanding, Favors was an integral part of Utah’s turnaround last season. The forward averaged 16 points, more than eight rebounds and 1.7 blocks per game in 2014-15. He’s also only 23-years-old and locked up with a reasonably-priced long-term contract.

Meanwhile, Millsap is 30 and has accrued nearly 20,000 minutes over the course of a nine-year NBA career. He could also command a salary that’s at or near the maximum this summer. Millsap has been an All-Star with the Atlanta Hawks and a driving force in their ascension to the top of the Eastern Conference, but could be a questionable fit for the Jazz roster.

Still, reports that the Jazz could make a change on the front line are out there. There is also reason to believe that a Jazz-Millsap reunion could prove beneficial for both sides. I recently discussed some of the pros and cons of reacquiring Millsap and it’s not a black and white issue.

With that being said, this is probably the truth of things–

I, perhaps more than most, am a proponent of bringing in a quality veteran in free agency to complement the existing core. However, moving Derrick Favors to do so is not the way to go. While I like Millsap as a player, Favors’ youth and defensive capabilities alone would preclude me from acquiring one at the expense of the other.

Outside of acquiring the No. 1 pick from the Minnesota Timberwolves and drafting Karl-Anthony Towns (which wouldn’t even happen in Bizarro World), it’s hard to see a scenario where Favors is part of a draft-night trade and the Jazz get the better end of the deal.

Alas, as is the case with most of the draft-day rumors, a Favors trade is probably all smoke and very little fire.

Next: Could Trey Burke Be on the Move??

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