Thurl Bailey bucks against the notion of going big game hunting

Thurl Bailey thinks the Utah Jazz should avoid veteran players.
Utah Jazz v Washington Bullets
Utah Jazz v Washington Bullets / Focus On Sport/GettyImages

Danny Ainge wants to go "big game hunting" this offseason, landing a major player or two in his attempt to improve the team and get them into playoff contender status. Most everyone is on board with that idea, but not Utah Jazz broadcast analyst Thurl Bailey. Bailey recently spoke to Bill Reily on the Billy Reily Show on ESPN 92.1 and spoke about Ainge's comments.

Essentially, shooting down the idea that the team should go after veterans, and instead look at coachable, young stars, saying (via Sports Illustrated);

"“As I’m looking at the playoffs, I’m looking at kind of what’s trending right now. I think what is not trending is older veterans, superstars -- if you’re trying to get a championship before that window closes, and what’s trending more are very good young players who are developing, very coachable and very talented and are able to do it on both ends. Especially on the defensive end.”"

While this dumps a cold glass of water on our excitement, he's not wrong. The older players are largely not winning titles. Save for LeBron James in 2020, which many right off as a fluke, the better, younger players are the ones taking their teams to Title Town. Step Curry won a title two seasons ago, but he was still 34, right at the edge of leaving his prime

Aside from that, the best, young players are the ones who end up winning titles. While some of those names may be old now, James and Curry exchanged titles nearly a decade ago when both men were 31 and 28 respectively. They may be the leagues' old hats, but the proof is in the pudding.

So we agree with Bailey when he says to avoid the older veterans, but aside from Kevin Durant, we're not rooting for the team to land an over-the-hill ex-star. The oldest guy the fandom seems to want is Giannis Antetokounmpo. The rest of the guys the fans want are under 30, and for good reason. We're looking to pair someone up with Lauri Markkanen, so they're on the same timeline.

While Durant is a game-changing veteran still, no one else over 30, who we expect to be on the trade block, really is anymore. So we agree and disagree with Bailey in that regard.