The Utah Jazz were expected to face a harsh reality last season. Their previous offseason saw the exodus of their two best players in Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap and suddenly they began their rebuild in the stark nakedness of youth and lack of depth.
With their top talent resting, the team floundered, as expected, showing their lack of depth and overall lack of talent. For a 25-win team, this wasn't exactly the most unexpected thing.
Going into the offseason, the Jazz have some young talent and tons of caps space to make moves. But will Utah maintain its slow, steady rebuilding effort instead, or will it look to move for an elite talent?
SF: Richard Jefferson (UFA), Brandon Rush (UFA)
Frankly the Jazz need talent anywhere. They have a small core of Derrick Favors, Trey Burke and Enes Kanter with the ability to re-sign Gordon Hayward, but they need more impact -- and that goes for either side of the ball.
Their offense was 25th out of 30 and their defense ranked 29th in efficiency. Neither are good marks, but their defense could use significant improvement. They were ranked 29th in ability to force turnovers, and 26th in enforced effective field-goal percentage (eFG). Finding better perimeter defense in particular is a must.
Their offense wasn't much better with an eFG of 48.4 percent, but it far beats out what their defense permits.
With three picks in the draft and all within the top 40, the Jazz have the ability to make some big selections in regards to their youth.
However, they have so much youth already that stockpiling draft picks to move up is a strong option. They're rather focused on grabbing one of the top-two overall picks via trade, reportedly offering packages that include Favors and perhaps Alec Burks and other first-round picks, according to radio personality Spencer Checketts.
Other than that, the Jazz might not be looking at a dynamic talent like those in the top couple picks. Aaron Gordon could be the top talent available to them, which is far from the worst scenario. He has terrific defensive talent and athletic ability, In other capacities, Gordon has been fairly versatile, which could make him a solid fit for Utah.
However, they'd definitely prefer Andrew Wiggins or Jabari Parker, if they can maneuver their position up there.