The Utah Jazz had a disappointing end to their 2020 NBA playoffs. After being up 3-1 against the Denver Nuggets, they lost the next 3 games and were knocked out in the first round. After failing to win a playoff series in two seasons, the Jazz are under pressure to make some big adjustments in the offseason to upgrade their roster. Based on recent NBA trade rumors and the cap space available, here's the dream starting 5 for the Utah Jazz going into the 2020-21 season.
Point Guard: Mike Conley
Even though most Utah Jazz fans might not have Mike Conley as their 'dream point guard', they aren't left with many other options at this point. Conley has just one year left on his contract, and it'll be difficult to find a trade partner given his $34-million salary going into 2020-21.
Coming off a season averaging 21.1 points with the Memphis Grizzlies, Mike Conley averaged just 14.4 points and played significantly lesser minutes than previous years. Utah Jazz's best bet is to hope that Conley can elevate his game next year and play like his former self.
Shooting Guard: Donovan Mitchell
No surprises here. Donovan Mitchell is the face of the franchise and will likely continue to be their best player in the coming years. Mitchell had a stellar season this year. He went on to average 24 points and shot at over 36% from downtown.
The 24-year-old also earned his first All-Star selection in 2020 and became the only player outside of Michael Jordan and Allen Iverson to have multiple 50-point games in a single playoff series. Spida will be Utah Jazz's best hope at making a deeper run in the playoffs in 2020-21.
Small Forward: Bojan Bogdanović
Bojan Bogdanovic averaged 20.2 points this season and continues to be Utah Jazz's best 3-point shooter. Unfortunately, he underwent a season-ending wrist surgery during the NBA shutdown and did not play in the Orlando bubble.
Despite a good performance against the Denver Nuggets in the first round, Utah Jazz dearly missed their best sharpshooter. He'll be an important piece on the offense going into the 2020-21 season.
Power Forward: Wendell Carter Jr
The power forward position has been an issue for the Utah Jazz ever since Derrick Favors left. In order to contend in the playoffs next year, they need a strong 4 who could contribute on both ends.
Chicago Bulls' Wendell Carter Jr is already a dominant defensive player and will continue to improve on the offensive end. The 21-year-old recently expressed his desire to play as a power forward instead of a center. With recent NBA trade rumors news suggesting the Bulls' desire to be active in the trade market, the Utah Jazz should try to land Wendell Carter Jr this offseason.
Center: Joel Embiid
Yes, Joel Embiid! Irrespective of what Philadelphia 76ers fans say, there's a good chance one of their two superstars will be traded in the offseason. Embiid's fit with Simmons is still a concern, and the 76ers are looking to bring in another star.
For Utah Jazz, Embiid can do almost everything Rudy Gobert used to do on defense. On the offensive end, the Cameroonian is a different beast altogether. Although the Utah Jazz might have to add a few more pieces along with Gobert for this trade, pairing up Donovan Mitchell with Joel Embiid might be worth the price.
Published 29 Sep 2020, 20:44 IST