Despite several question marks facing both him and his spot on the team this summer, Derrick Favors has made his desire to stay with the Utah Jazz clear.
Although the Utah Jazz aren’t facing nearly as worrisome of an offseason this summer as they did last summer when both of their two leading scorers, Gordon Hayward and George Hill, were unrestricted free agents, they still find themselves with a few tough decisions. Principal among them is the future of Derrick Favors, Utah’s lone free agent starter.
As the current longest-tenured Jazzman, Favors has become a key component of this team and widely loved by the Utah faithful. He is occasionally overlooked, but remains a steady contributor who has taken on whatever role Quin Snyder and Co. have asked of him.
However, his unrestricted free agency looms large over this summer as he and his Jazz team face a number of questions. Should Derrick remain with the Jazz or pursue a larger role and/or more money elsewhere? If he wants a higher paycheck, will any team be willing to offer him that in a tight market? Do the Jazz want to keep Favors or should they look to replace him with a playmaking stretch-four rather than tie up more money in him?
I’ve addressed those and several other questions in a recent piece all about Derrick Favors. Be sure to check it out via the link in the tweet below:
But before any of those questions are answered, perhaps there’s another more pressing concern that should be considered – Does Derrick even want to stay with the Utah Jazz?
After all, he’s been the subject of several trade rumors. He’s seen his role diminished as Rudy Gobert has emerged and the nature of big men, particularly power forwards, in the league has changed. At one point, there were even reports that Favors had made his intention not to re-sign with the Jazz clear. This led some to think that an eventual divorce was imminent.
However, things have changed dramatically since then, from Favors thriving with his tight-knit Jazz squad, declaring on social media that he’s open to returning to the Jazz and playing a key role in Utah’s first-round playoff series victory over OKC.
And recently, he made his thoughts on staying with the Jazz even more clear. According to a Salt Lake Tribune report, in a Saturday interview, Favors stated plainly, “I want to be here.”
He would then go on to say the following:
“I love my teammates, I love the organization. This is where I grew up. At the same time, I know that if I’m going to be here, there are certain sacrifices that I’m going to have to make. So, I just have to wait and see how things work out when the time comes.”
That’s an awesome thing to hear from a widely beloved Jazzman, who has worked his tail off to thrive with the Jazz and has sacrificed individual acclaim for the betterment of the team time after time, all without uttering a single complaint.
I, along with Jazz brass, would love to see Derrick Favors back next season as well, but there are a lot of factors that will play into that decision including money, Favors’ role and potential free agent opportunities. The aforementioned quote from Favors makes it sound as if he may be willing to continue to sacrifice in terms of his role and perhaps financially if need be in order to stay with this Jazz team, but only time will tell what really can be agreed upon.
It will no doubt be a tough decision for both Derrick Favors and the Jazz as well. Whatever comes of it, hopefully it will put both in an ideal situation to be successful next season and beyond.