You can only be a promise and potential for so long. The Utah Jazz want to return to their successful ways of the past, and part of the plan is to finally get more offensive production from Derrick Favors, who started making steps in the right direction last season.
The 23 year old big man who was the third overall pick in the 2010 NBA draft has been something of a development project for the last few years. He was traded midway through his rookie season to the Utah Jazz as part of the Deron Williams trade, and has since been a solid scorer off the bench, but the Jazz always had bigger plans for him.
After both Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap didn’t sign in 2013, it was clear that Favors, along with Kanter, are going to become the new dominant big man duo for the Jazz. It hasn’t exactly panned out that way, as Kanter wasn’t starting as much as Favors last season, but his production certainly got a boost with the added minutes, and the Jazz expect more of the same this season.
Favors averaged 13.3 points in 30.2 minutes a night last season, adding 8.7 rebounds and 1.5 blocks. After getting used to having Al Jefferson in the paint, the Jazz want Favors to start scoring the same numbers and become a bit more versatile.
Most of the off-season for the former Georgia Tech player has been dedicated to that cause. He’s been working on a jumper, adding moves to his low-post game and has shed some weight to make it easier for him to move around.
Under the new head coach, Favors will no longer park in the paint and wait for lob passes to reach him. It’s going to be a much faster offense than before, and Favors will have a lot of pick-and-roll to be doing with Dante Exum, Trey Burke and others. It’s not going to be immediate success most likely, but it’s going to be a lot more enjoyable to watch the Jazz play basketball next season, and that includes an improved Derrick Favors.