Which players on the Jazz roster will be a part of their regular rotation, and what will their roles be?
PG Mike Conley
SG Collin Sexton
SF Malik Beasley
PF Lauri Markkanen
C Kelly Olynyk
DEEP BENCH – VETERANS
DEEP BENCH – DEVELOPING YOUTH
LIKELY TO BE WAIVED
Analyzing the depth chart for the Jazz at this point in time feels a bit premature. It’s difficult to imagine that Mike Conley, Jordan Clarkson, and Rudy Gay will be with the team much longer, and a player like Malik Beasley is also probably more valuable in trade than he would be to the Jazz.
It seems like Sexton and Markkanen are considered to be building blocks with which to start the rebuild. There is a question at center – Kelly Olynyk is expected to start, but that’s obviously just a stopgap solution. The opportunity will be there for either Walker Kessler or Udoka Azubuike to claim that spot.
There also should be an open competition for the point guard spot once Conley is set free. Both Alexander-Walker and Bolmaro are tall playmaking guards who may fit well alongside Collin Sexton. Jared Butler will also get a look, as he had success in college playing alongside other ball-dominant guards.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
This team is expected to be terrible but there is some young talent here. The coaching staff and front office will be watching closely to determine which guys have the potential to develop into viable rotation players. The team is hoping that the group of Agbaji, Alexander-Walker, Azubuike, Bolmaro, Butler, Horton-Tucker, Juzang, and Kessler yields at least 3 rotation players with 1-2 of those being starters. Most of the 2nd and 3rd year players already have gotten some court time and have been inconsistent in their production. However, some of them were on deep teams in the playoff hunt who could not afford to leave them out there to play through their mistakes. Agbaji is the most promising of the rookies and will probably get the most opportunities, given the team’s current lack of depth at the wing positions.
The other option at the wing position who might have a chance to flourish is Fontecchio, an under-the-radar signing from Italy. He’s only 26 years old, is a legit 6’8″ tall, converts a good percentage from long range, and isn’t a sieve defensively. He wasn’t drafted in 2017 but did perform well at the 2020 Olympics. The question will be whether he can compete at the NBA level and can perform consistently playing extended minutes over such a long season. If Fontecchio is going to find a home in the NBA, he certainly won’t find a better opportunity to do so than the one he has in Utah.