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News » Utah Jazz Extra: Starting 5

Utah Jazz Extra: Starting 5

Utah Jazz Extra: Starting 5 Ah, family, football, food and an extra serving of hoops. Hope you're also excited to celebrate Black Friday Eve. In the spirit of the holiday, here are five things Jazz fans can be thankful for: 1. A tradition with a lot more W's than Zz's A national radio sports show talked recently about the Jazz playing some home games in Sin City once upon a time. The Las Vegas Strippers would've won a lot of games had Larry H. Miller not kept Utah in, well, Utah.

Since the Jazz stopped flirting with the Cocktail Waitress Capital in '85, they've averaged 50 wins and made 21 playoff trips. In 2010, the Jazz will have a Hall of Fame inductee (Karl Malone) for the third year in a row. Utah currently has 3-1/2 All-Stars on it (Deron Williams is the half, but he's likely to earn a spot soon), so the winning isn't likely to stop. Heck, if they can even win in San Antonio, who's telling how much winning they might do this year. 2. Boozer hasn't booed back at the fans The situation could've gotten really ugly this year. Carlos Boozer's wallet opted in to his contract in Utah, then his mouth opted in to Miami and Chicago. BUT ... the power forward showed up in Utah in tip-top shape, has said and done all the right things, is playing well with others, hasn't torn or tweaked anything yet, and has refound his old All-Star game after a stumbling start. Love him or loathe him, but he's currently helping the Jazz win ? which is more than guys like Allen Iverson, Tracy McGrady and Stephon Marbury are doing for their teams. 3. The young and the resting less (aka: rookies) Wondering: Can you call a player the steal of the draft if he wasn't drafted? Draft shaft Wesley Matthews is a fantastic find. The swingman might even make sporting pink backpacks cool again. First-rounder Eric Maynor is tearing it up, too. The VCU PG has to be making the Commonwealth of Virginia proud. 4. The best is yet to come* (*Maybe. Cross fingers.) Consider how many games the Jazz have already missed due to injuries and illness. The answer: A whole lot (38, if numbers are your thing). And that's not counting Matt Harpring. Even so, the Jazz are rolling and are only two games out of first in the Northwest. Best part? There are still got 69 regular-season games to go. The fun has just begun. And no matter how the season plays out, just be thankful you're not paying the $100 million payroll/luxury tax bill. 5. Your players have some big hearts Some of Utah's athletes might not be Mother Teresa, but that's only because she couldn't dunk and shoot like they can. Seriously, though, the Jazz guys are up to a bunch of good in the community. Ronnie Price just started a charity to help kids get scholarships. Deron Williams' Point of Hope Foundation is teaming with the Jazz to give thousands of low-income and homeless people a nice turkey dinner today. Kyle Korver rounded up 500-plus coats for children. Carlos Boozer, Williams and Korver donated about 4,000 tickets to nonprofit organizations that help youth and individuals in need. There's likely lots more going on behind the scenes, too. All that off-the-court giving is worth a standing ovation. e-mail:

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Added: November 24, 2009


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