7 Difference-makers the Utah Jazz signed past their prime

Rudy Gay, Utah Jazz Credit: Christopher Creveling-USA TODAY Sports
Rudy Gay, Utah Jazz Credit: Christopher Creveling-USA TODAY Sports /
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Utah Jazz Joe Johnson
Utah Jazz Joe Johnson(Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports) /

Joe Johnson (2016)

Over the course of his career, Joe Johnson made seven All-Star teams. In his prime, he was one of the best scorers in the league. Johnson made his waves in the league with the Atlanta Hawks but had five other stops in the league before officially calling it a career after the 2017-18 season and then in 2021-22 after an extremely abbreviated comeback. One of his stops post-Hawks was with the Utah Jazz.

Signing a two-year with the Jazz during the summer of 2016, the hope was that Johnson would be a valued veteran who could help right the ship and open the door for this team to make a return to the postseason. Even though the 2016-17 Jazz finished as the fifth seed and made it to the second round of the playoffs, Johnson’s two-year stint with Utah was very much inconsistent.

During his first season with the team, Johnson played in 78 games, starting 14 of them. He averaged nine points per game on 43 percent shooting from the field. During his second season, his production took a hit as he struggled with injuries. The Jazz quickly realized Johnson was no longer a fit and was traded to the Sacramento as part of a three-team deal.