Today’s post will be short and sweet. It appears the Utah Jazz achieved their best-case scenario in last night’s draft by acquiring the draft rights to point guard Trey Burke (9th overall pick) from Minnesota in exchange for the 14th and 21st overall picks. Rather than sit back and take what will likely amount to two average role players at-best, Utah was aggressive and landed a playmaker widely regarded as the best point guard in the draft and someone who appears to be the perfect fit for their team. While the Jazz also made two shrewd moves in acquiring the rights to center Rudy Gobert (27th overall from Denver) and point guard Raul Neto (47th overall from Atlanta) – the Burke trade alone made their draft a success.
I’ve kept tabs on Burke since he was a senior in high school and think he will provide Utah exactly what it needs as both a point guard and leader. In the coming days I will break down Burke’s game further, but for now here’s a short video profiling his 2013 season in which he was named First-Team All-American as well as Big Ten Player of the Year and National Player of the Year. The first-half of the video includes excerpts featuring Burke from the Big Ten Network’s “The Journey,” while the second-half includes highlights from his 2013 collegiate season.
Obviously draft picks can only truly be judged several years down the road, but for now the Jazz appeared to have filled a massive hole at point guard with someone who could stabilize the position for the rest of the decade.
Winston Churchill cautioned that “Success is never final, failure is never fatal,” but after the failures from the past several Jazz seasons, celebration and excitement over the last night’s draft success is certainly justifiable.