Friday, September 19, 2008

2010 Lottery/Deron Williams

As several Jazz fans are aware, Utah has the New York Knickerbockers 1st round pick in the 2010 draft. Will the Knicks be the worst team and give the Jazz the #1 pick? Obviously nobody knows. The Knicks were headed nowhere under Isiah Thomas and having a top five or top ten pick in the draft would have been almost certain had Isiah stayed in charge. But they just hired Donnie Walsh as team president and Mike D'Antoni as the head coach, not exactly what the Jazz were hoping. The Knicks have players such as David Lee, Eddy Curry, Jamal Crawford, and Quentin Richardson who are alright players not to mention Stephon Marbury and Zach Randolph. Luckily Marbury and Randolph are severly overpaid and the Knicks have really bad payroll issues that don't look to be resolved unless someone wants to take on a really bad contract. So the Knicks likely can't afford a big-name free agent. I think the chances are still very good that the Jazz could end up with a top 10 or 5 pick. Wouldn't it be something if they got the number one pick? For me, it doesn't need to be the #1 overall pick to make me happy I mean remember what Kevin O'Conner did last time with the high lottery pick of #6 in 2005? He traded up and got the #3 pick and took Deron Williams, the team's undisputed leader and best player. So I trust the Jazz management to get something done with a good lottery pick.

Speaking of D-Will he seems to be a genuine great guy. Williams was all over the place this summer and not because he had to. He is one of the rare athletes who lives in Salt Lake year round. He genuinely likes it here. Malone would always run off to Louisiana, Jerry Sloan goes and plays with his John Deeres, and Stockton, well we never knew what Stockton was doing because he was so private. But check out some stuff he did over the summer, and not because anybody forced him to: (from
Deseret News)

"Williams appeared at Sam's Club this summer, as a guest, not for walking-around cash (he doesn't need that with a new $70 million contract), but because they asked him. He wanted to meet the people and he did — roughly 2,000 of 'em. Not once did he roll his eyes." "He said, 'We need to do more of this.'"

" Last weekend, Williams was in Champaign, Ill., for the Fighting Illini alumni game. Williams established a scholarship foundation, and the fundraiser attracted former players such as Dee Brown, Roger Powell, Kendall Gill and Nick Anderson, as well as Phoenix Suns' chairman Jerry Colangelo, Illinois coach Bruce Weber and former coach Lou Henson. A regular Memory Lane moment. His reason for the foundation? Yup. He wanted to give back."

"He also appeared at the Carmen B. Pingree Center for Children with Autism last week to play with the kids. Really play. Because he has an extended family member who is autistic, it was something he volunteered. "I was briefing him beforehand, telling him, 'Deron, some of these kids may not notice what that gold medal is, or what it stands for. Some of them might not understand what the Jazz are,'" said Williams' marketing director, Steve Wright. "He said, 'Steve, I got it. I know. If I can touch them for even five minutes, I'm there.'" Proceeds from his celebrity golf tournament next week will go to the school."

If the Jazz end up losing Boozer or Okur or Korver next summer, (although they'd be crazy to leave) Deron plans to try to attract free-agents and show them SLC isn't such a bad place and the Jazz are one of the NBA's elite franchises. Sounds like a plan to me, who wouldn't want to play with D-Will? The Jazz are lucky to have one of the game's top 5 best young players who happens to be a great human being as well.

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