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News » Utah Jazz Notes, Quotes 2008-07-26

Utah Jazz Notes, Quotes 2008-07-26

Utah Jazz Notes, Quotes 2008-07-26
--A year ago, the Jazz signed Jason Hart to a two-year, $4.8 million contract hoping the veteran guard could help fill the void left after Derek Fisher's departure. Instead, Hart's stay in Utah lasted just one season.

The Jazz traded Hart to the Clippers for fellow veteran point guard Brevin Knight, a move that will save them nearly $900,000 this season. Hart struggled to pick up the Jazz's offense and shot a career-worst 32.2 percent.

He lost his job as Deron Wlliiams' backup to Ronnie Price 50 games in and finished the season out of the rotation. Knight is steady but not spectacular, with a 4.62:1 assist-to-turnover ratio that ranked second in the NBA last season.

Knight's agent called the trade a "pleasant surprise" and said he looked forward to playing for a contender. The Jazz will be the ninth team in Knight's career.

"We felt we got somebody that can run our team," Jazz general manager Kevin O'Connor said.

--After investing three years in C.J. Miles' development, the Jazz didn't want to lose him. Miles signed a four-year, $15 million offer sheet with Oklahoma City, but the Jazz matched it.

Miles, a second-round pick out of high school in 2005, was one of the 15 youngest players in the NBA last season even as a third-year pro. He averaged 5.0 points in 60 games but has not had a regular role with the Jazz.

Miles averaged 10.5 points during a 10-game stretch at the end of December and start of January. He stepped in after Gordan Giricek clashed for the final time with coach Jerry Sloan, but Miles ended up the odd man out after Kyle Korver's arrival in a trade.

--With Jazz owner Larry Miller having been hospitalized for nearly six weeks due to complications from diabetes, Miller's oldest son, Greg, last week was named chief executive officer of his father's group of companies.

Larry Miller will serve as chairman of a newly created 10-member governing board and retain what Greg called a "critical voice" in the company. Larry Miller is expected to remain the Jazz's final decision-maker on all major issues.

If nothing else, Greg Miller promised a dramatically different style as CEO than that of his father as owner. Larry Miller sits courtside for games at EnergySolutions Arena, has his own stall in the Jazz locker room and calls in weekly to a Salt Lake City sports radio show.

"I don't think anybody wants to hear what I have to say," Greg Miller said. "I like to go under the radar. I think I've got a lot to learn before I'm in a position where anybody would want to listen to my opinion."

Greg Miller has worked the past two years as an executive at his father's motor-sports park. He said his father remains hospitalized in a rehabilitation unit, working to regain his strength, energy and mobility.

--Even though the U.S. and Iran are at odds on the world stage, the Jazz played host to the Iranian Olympic team during the Rocky Mountain Revue summer league. Iran qualified for the Olympics for the first time in 60 years by winning the FIBA Asian championship last summer.

The Iranians played two games against NBA teams in the Revue, losing to the Jazz 82-57 despite taking a first-quarter lead. As part of their visit to Utah, the Iranians went shopping at a Park City outlet mall and attended the annual Salt Lake City rodeo.

With 100 Iranian supporters in the stands for the game against the Jazz, the crowd was more boisterous than any other during the summer league.

"It was a heck of a buzz," Jazz guard Morris Almond said, "even from the warm-ups. I was asking (Jazz prospect Yaroslav) Korolev, 'Is that how it is across the water?' And he said, 'That's how it is.' It definitely gave everyone a little boost of adrenaline."

QUOTE TO NOTE: "A lot of people have skills. A lot of them are sitting on the sidewalk wondering what happened 20 years ago when they had a chance. He's got to figure out what he wants to do and play basketball or be a clown." -- Jazz coach Jerry Sloan, on second-year C Kyrylo Fesenko, who returned to Utah for the Rocky Mountain Revue having dyed his hair blond.

Author: Fox Sports
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Added: July 26, 2008


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