Lauri Markkanen is the top dog, but who is the 2nd best Utah Jazz player right now?

Kelly Olynyk and Lauri Markkanen of the Utah Jazz.
Kelly Olynyk and Lauri Markkanen of the Utah Jazz. /

The Utah Jazz need Lauri Markkanen to be the top guy, but who is his No. 2?

The Utah Jazz have a deep and well-curated roster. It’s untested, but the upside is unimaginable. The team, as a whole, has depth and talent, but they’re all going to be leaning on Lauri Markkanen as the engine to drive this car. And they should, his breakout season last year seems to be very real, at least according to his outings with Team Finland during the early stages of the FIBA World Cup.

But if we were doing power rankings, who would be his second? Well, we’ll eventually do our own, but until then, we’re going to borrow Salt Lake City Hopp’s Power Ranking. In their ranking, which we won’t go into the whole thing (go check their article out), we do want to see who they put at No. 2 after Markkanen.

See, there are really only two real names who could go there; Walter Kessler or Jordan Clarkson. While Collin Sexton deserves some love, he’s not there just yet. Clarkson is Markkanen’s number two guy on the court, he’s important to the team’s offense and will help take pressure off of Markkanen.

Kessler, however, is the best defensive player on the team already, and is already in talks to be a Defensive Player of the Year Award winner this year. His abilities in the paint will give the team a dynamo that few in the league have.

So who is the number two guy on the team? Well, SLCH is going with Kessler, and that makes sense, but we think it should go to Clarkson. Not because of what Clarkson can do better than Kessler, but because we don’t know what Kessler’s offensive game is.

Kessler has to prove he can put up double-digits on high efficiency, and if he can do that, then not only will he be someone the team can rely on this season, but he may be able to be someone the team can rely on for the years to come.

As for 2023-2024, from what we’ve seen, Clarkson’s just a more complete player.

dark. Next. One Year Later: Grading the Donovan Mitchell trade with the Cleveland Cavaliers