With Derrick Favors struggling and no other big man besides Rudy Gobert standing out, the Utah Jazz may need to look to make an improvement to their frontcourt.
The Utah Jazz came into the 2016-17 season with an up-and-coming starting five and what was supposed to be a daunting bench unit. While in more ways than not the now 31-19 Jazz are at least matching if not exceeding expectations, there’s no question that some players haven’t quite been as sharp as hoped.
Some of these have been backcourt players such as Rodney Hood and Dante Exum, but with so much wing depth on the roster, the Jazz have largely been able to patch those holes. The area where their struggles have been the most apparent has been in the frontcourt.
Of course, Rudy Gobert is the absolute exception to this as he has been phenomenal all season long. His impact on both ends of the floor have made him an absolute dominant force for the Jazz that has nearly been able to mask their deficiencies down low.
However, while Gobert has represented everything that has gone right with Utah’s post play, so far this season Derrick Favors has been representative of all that’s bad. Battling the lingering effects of a knee injury, Favors has looked like a shell of his former self all season long.
The other two rotation big men, Boris Diaw and Trey Lyles, have had their moments but overall haven’t been nearly as effective or consistent as expected. They’ve both been better with Gobert on the floor, but when he is in foul trouble or resting, Lyles and Diaw have had a hard time filling the void.
Also, when Favors has been injured (which has been a common occurrence this season), it’s been a struggle for either of them to proficiently man the center position. Thus, the healthy Favors from last season would be a welcome and much-needed sight on this Jazz team, but he has yet to appear during the 2016-17 campaign.
Therefore, the Jazz are very much in need of finding a solution to shore up the power forward and backup center positions on the team. And while earlier this season and certainly last season it would have seemed unthinkable for the Jazz to deal Derrick Favors, his frequent absences and lackluster play have proven that he may very well be quite expendable for the Jazz.
So with recent heightened speculation that the Jazz could be willing to trade Derrick Favors, the first two of these solutions will involve such a move. While his trade value may not necessarily be the greatest at the moment, teams looking to rebuild could be willing to take a chance on him given that he has just one year left on his contract after this season and still possesses a sky-high potential.
And given his blatant lack of production this season, the Jazz very well may need to look to test the market and see what they can get for him. If that ends up unsuccessful, then Utah could very well just be stuck with an unreliable frontcourt, but there are a couple of alternatives beyond that as well.
Either way, the Jazz will need to at least look into one of the following solutions if they hope to fill what has become a blatant void in their roster.