The Utah Jazz made headlines on Monday afternoon with the team’s acquisition of Atlanta Hawks former first-round pick John Collins. Utah was expected to be aggressive this offseason, and with this trade, it proves just that.
The addition of Collins in Salt Lake City could be one step closer to the team returning to the postseason. Nonetheless, it’s time to take a deeper look at the trade and give it a grade.
Jazz add John Collins to frontcourt
The Jazz managed to take advantage of the Hawks desire to move Collins contract and get the deal done, sending only Rudy Gay and a future second-round pick to Atlanta. With the 36-year-old likely being moved on in the offseason and second-round picks being traded left and right, it feels like a no-brainer for Utah. The ability to add young talent at a low cost is more than ideal, especially for a team with plenty of cap space.
Utah Jazz Grade: A
Utah’s addition of Collins to a rising team may be the most exciting part of this whole situation. Outside of the cheap price for the 25-year-old, his fit and ability to play with other big men like Lauri Markkanen and Walker Kessler make the trade even more exciting.
The Wake Forest product’s versatility will allow Will Hardy to make lineup changes and alter in-game rotations. Although Collins primarily plays at the power forward position, it’s fair to say his athletic traits and ability to stretch the floor will put him in position to play all over. Not only that, but the addition of the former Hawk will allow Lauri Markkanen to continue playing as the team’s small forward in certain lineups.
After countless years of Danny Ainge-led teams and Collins being linked to one another in trade rumors, the Jazz CEO finally got the explosive forward. Now, it’s time to see if Ainge’s long pursuit of talent is worth the wait.
Following the team’s trade for Collins, the Jazz will have the sixth-most cap space entering free agency with $28.4 million left to work with. Barring any other moves, Utah still has plenty of cards left to play if they desire to continue being aggressive as the offseason continues.
The question now is: What move will the Jazz make next?