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Gobert’s Potential For Offensive Improvement Should Excite Jazz Fans

Rudy Gobert #27 of the Utah Jazz goes to the basket against the Denver Nuggets in the first quarter at the Pepsi Center on February 28, 2019 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – You could call the Utah Jazz’s potential starting lineup the Fabulous 5. Why? The Utah Jazz were the only team with five players in the top 65 of Sports Illustrated’s top 100 players for next season.

“I think it’s really interesting because you look at teams like the Golden State Warriors or Houston Rockets or Denver Nuggets.  They are all in the Western Conference competing against the Jazz for a playoff spot, and the Jazz have one extra guy in the starting line-up that is a top echelon NBA player,” said Kyle Ireland on the latest Jazz Notes podcast.

The brightest Jazz star on the list was Rudy Gobert at 14, but his stardom comes on the defensive end.  Cleon Wall, host of Jazz Notes, is still excited to see how his offense could improve this season with the likes of Mike Conley, Jr., Bojan Bogdanovic and Joe Ingles spacing the floor.


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“They aren’t going to be sucking in on him so much.  And if they do run a pick and roll with Ingles and Gobert and they crash in on (Gobert), someone is going to be open.  And someone is going to be able to knock it down from the outside.  You hope that one of those guys will be Donovan Mitchell,” said Wall.

Gobert Shorted

Ireland thinks Gobert should have been in the top 10 of SI’s rankings.

“Some people may say ‘He’s just the 2-time defensive player of the year.’  That’s pretty impressive in an of itself, but he’s also super-efficient offensively and if his possessions can go up this year and he can produce…with the same efficiency, it’s going to be spectacular to see what he does.”

Top 5 Power Forwards

After the guys gushed over Rudy Gobert’s potential this next season, they then nominated their top 5 Jazz power forwards of all-time.  Just like with the point guards, it was easy to crown Karl “The Mailman” Malone the king, or maybe he should be called the Postmaster General.

The duo agreed that the second slot should go to Carlos Boozer, even though Ireland thought it could be a controversial pick.  He said Boozer was one of the Jazz’s few big free-agent signings.

“I think that the fact that he (chose) Utah and helped Utah get to the Western Conference Finals after not being there for almost a decade was a big moment…Some of the other power forwards on this list fans may have liked a bit more, but they were not able to get to that level of play,” said Ireland.

What if?

“(Boozer) was a 2-time All-Star and he averaged 19.3 points a game and 10.5 rebounds a game as a Jazzman,”  added Wall.  “He may not have been a fan favorite, but he was good, even though he was not good on defense.  We play the ‘What If’ game a lot on the Jazz Notes podcast…What if he had a good defensive center to play along with?  How good would he have been?”

Ireland nominated Derrick Favors as his 3rd best power forward, but Wall chose Paul Millsap.

Listen to the Jazz Notes podcast below for the rest of the list and the reasoning behind the choices.

The Jazz Notes podcast drops at least weekly and can be found at KSLSports.com, the KSL Newsradio App, Apple Podcasts or other podcast providers.

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