ESPN has the Utah Jazz ranked 20th in their post-offseason Power Rankings

Collin Sexton, Walker Kessler, and Jordan Clarkson of the Utah Jazz.
Collin Sexton, Walker Kessler, and Jordan Clarkson of the Utah Jazz. /

The folks at ESPN aren’t too high on the Utah Jazz this season.

The Utah Jazz were nearly a playoff team last season. They almost found their way into the play-in tournament and had they not traded Mike Conley and sat Lauri Markkanen in the backstretch of the season, they probably would have. They then just got better by getting three young studs in the 2023 NBA Draft and landing John Collins via a trade.

And they only had to give up Rudy Gay to do so. The Jazz are better and are good enough to warrant playoff considerations. Just don’t tell the folks at ESPN that. Now no one is suggesting that the Jazz should be in the Top 5 or Top 10, but 20th?

That seems rude.

Here’s what ESPN had to say about the Jazz;

"20. Utah Jazz2022-23 record: 37-45Result: Missed postseason2024 title odds: +30000The Jazz acquired John Collins in a salary dump from the Hawks, and coach Will Hardy is excited to plug a 26-year-old forward a few years removed from being a 20-10 guy between franchise cornerstones Lauri Markkanen and Walker Kessler. Utah is taking a patient approach, incorporating three rookie first-round picks and holding on to its huge stockpile of future draft capital. — MacMahon"

The Jazz aren’t perfect on paper, the guard situation isn’t great, and the team defense needs to be tweaked some. The hope is that the rookies, Collins, and a full season of guys like Kris Dunn and Walker Kessler can improve that area.

The offense is going to be good, but facilitation is a problem that could be exploited as the season goes on. Still, the Jazz are in the Top 8 in the West today, based on last year’s performances and the moves they made. So, maybe somewhere in the No. 15 – No. 18 spots would be more fitting fo the Jazz.

They still have a lot to prove, sure, but they’ve proven enough to warrant a higher ranking, even if it’s just barely higher.

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