According to reports from Pro Basketball Talk, the Utah Jazz and Washington Wizards may be working on a deal that would give the Utah Jazz some much needed depth after the torn ACL suffered by Dante Exum.
The Utah Jazz are pursuing Washington Wizards guard Garrett Temple. Temple is third on the depth chart (behind Ramon Sessions and John Wall) for the Wizards. While the Utah Jazz are in need of a second point guard that they can trust, since Exum will most likely miss the season. The Utah Jazz’s starting point guard next season will be Trey Burke.
According to J. Michael of CSNWashington.com, the Wizards are not looking to move Temple, but this may be a way of gaining leverage in order to receive some value in return. Jeff Zilgitt of USA Today Sports reports that the Wizards are “not opposed” to making a trade.
Michael adds that the Utah Jazz and Wizards have not spoken, but they most likely have begun discussions through back channels.
The Washington Wizards have signed another point guard in Gary Neal, a sharpshooter who last played for the San Antonio Spurs. Neal could be a replacement for Temple, as he has playoff experience, which the Wizards desperately need, and he can provide valuable minutes off the bench.
In a deal with the Utah Jazz, the Wizards are looking to receive “either no salary” or a “non-guaranteed contract.” If the team can create a trade exception, they will likely go through with the deal, and they also may do it if they have a player they can waive.
The Utah Jazz have an extremely young team, with their oldest player being 28-year-old Elijah Millsap, who played 20 minutes per game last season off the bench. If Temple were to be imported, he would be the oldest player on the Utah Jazz roster, and be one of the few with playoff experience.
Temple is a point guard that, first and foremost, worries about defense, something he excels at. This is why Wizards’ head coach Randy Wittman probably wants to keep him around. But if the Utah Jazz can find the number that the Wizards want, then a trade may be coming. This is all a negotiation.
Do you think the Utah Jazz will make a transaction in order to acquire Garrett Temple? If not, what other moves do you see the Utah Jazz making before the NBA season begins in October?
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