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Key Departures: Devin Harris, Josh Howard, CJ Miles
Key Additions: Mo Williams, Randy Foye, Marvin Williams
2011-2012 Record: 36-30, 8th in the West
Utah Jazz fever is running rampant again in the streets of Salt Lake City.
Ty Corbin returns for his second season as head coach. This time, though, he has a full fall camp to work with. As well as a month of preseason. And some welcome new additions as well.
The Utah Jazz feature a new, more athletic squad this season, as well as a much deeper and talented backcourt. The new look roster features players with the ability to play multiple positions on any given night. And a bolstered three-point attack that adds a much-needed dimension to a team that was 27th in the league last year in three point percentage.
In the offseason the Jazz added guards Mo Williams and Randy Foye, as well as forward Marvin Williams. Ty Corbin has a luxury that any coach in the NBA would love to have… depth. Depth at the wing position and depth in the backcourt.
The Jazz also feature four young budding stars returning that all have something to prove. Gordon Hayward and Derrick Favors came on strong to end the season last year. Expectations are high for them.. Favors in particular. The young power forward showed his worth defensively last year, establishing himself as a soon-to-be premier defender in the league, but has yet to have that breakout offensive performance.
The biggest buzz of the off-season surrounded the #3 overall draft pick of the 2011 draft, Enes Kanter. His work ethic and off-season workouts found him entering fall camp in phenomenal shape. He is much quicker and more athletic. He also worked heavily on his offensive game, improving on his post moves in particular. He is poised to have a breakout year for the Jazz.
Likewise guard Alec Burks worked in the offseason. One very noticeable area he has improved on is his shot. Look for Burks to add an outside touch to his game. Add that to his innate ability to get to the rim and the free throw line and the Jazz have a very dangerous player at the guard position. Burks is poised to have a huge sophomore year.
With the new additions and the expected improvements from the young players combined with the steady play of the veteran anchors, Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap, the 2012-2013 season could see the Jazz once again in the playoffs. The Utah Jazz are a team to watch this season. A talented dark horse in the west.