Top 50 Utah Jazz Players Countdown: #10 Andrei Kirilenko
Oct 10, 2023, 11:55 AM | Updated: 1:29 pm
(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
SALT LAKE CITY – The countdown for KSL Sports’ 50 greatest Utah Jazz players continues and coming in at number 10 is forward Andrei Kirilenko.
Leading up to the tip-off of the 50th season in Jazz history, Jake Scott and Ben Anderson have been counting down the top 50 players in franchise history as voted on by fans and the media.
Here’s a look at Andrei Kirilenko’s career with the Jazz.
Jazz 50: Rank No. 10 – Andrei Kirilenko
Selected by the Jazz with the 24th pick of the 1999 NBA Draft, Kirilenko joined the roster in 2001 after spending two additional seasons playing overseas in Russia.
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After finally joining the team Kirilenko wasted little time making his impact felt being named to the 2002 All-Rookie team while averaging 10.7 points, 4.9 rebounds, 1.1 assists, 1.9 blocks, and 1.4 steals.
By his third year in the NBA, Kirilenko had emerged as one of the more unique players in the league, leading the Jazz to a surprising 42-40 season in the absence of Karl Malone and John Stockton, and earning an All-Star nod.
Kirilenko was one of the NBA’s most versatile defenders leading the league in blocked shots per game in 2005, and was named to three consecutive All-Defensive teams between 2003-06.
Injuries and an inconsistent role in the Jazz frontcourt never allowed Kirilenko to develop into a perennial All-Star, but he was a staple in Utah over 10 seasons, including six trips to the postseason, including a Western Conference Finals run in 2007.
Kirilenko’s name is littered across the Jazz all-time leader board statistically ranking in the top 10 in games played (seventh), minutes played (fifth), free throws made (fourth), offensive rebounds (eighth), defensive rebounds (tenth), total rebounds (ninth), assists (sixth), steals (fourth), blocks (second), points (sixth), triple-doubles (third), steals per game (seventh), blocks per game (third), PER (tenth), and win shares (fifth).
He’s one of two players in NBA history (Hakeem Olajuwon) to record at least five points, five rebounds, five assists, five steals, and five blocks in a single game three times or more.
Follow the rest of the Jazz 50 countdown with Jake and Ben Monday through Friday at 11:30 leading up to the opening day of the regular season. You can see the full list here.
Ben Anderson is the Utah Jazz insider for KSL Sports and the co-host of Jake and Ben from 10-12p with Jake Scott on 97.5 The KSL Sports Zone. Find Ben on Twitter at @BensHoops or on Instagram @BensHoops.
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