Jazz boss Kevin O'Connor will speak next week with the agent for Andrei Kirilenko to discuss picking up the fourth-year option on Kirilenko's rookie contract, O'Connor said Friday.

The Jazz have until Oct. 31 to pick up the option, which according to salary-slotted NBA collective bargaining agreement rules is worth about $1.8 million in the 2004-05 season.

Faced last season with a similar decision regarding fellow former first-round draft pick DeShawn Stevenson, the Jazz waited until the eve of the deadline until picking up the option.

With Kirilenko, however, the wait should not be so long.

O'Connor on Friday suggested the decision to do so has been made, and that working out the deal amounts to a mere "formality."

Kirilenko, star of the Russian National Team, averaged 12 points and 5.3 rebounds as an NBA sophomore last season.

MR. ARROYO GOES TO WASHINGTON: Puerto Rican point guard Carlos Arroyo of the Jazz was back at practice Friday morning, fresh from a Thursday visit to the White House for an Hispanic Heritage Month reception hosted by President Bush.

Before he went, Arroyo said his first question to the President probably would be "How you doing?"

So?

"He's good," said Arroyo, whose name, along with that of several other well-known Hispanic athletes and entertainers, was called out by Bush as part of the festivities.

Arroyo, who missed three two-a-day training camp sessions in order to represent the Jazz in Washington, said the President "thanked me for coming."

Next it's off to Mexico for Arroyo, who leaves along with the rest of the Jazz this morning for Mexico City in advance in advance of Sunday's preseason opener vs. Dallas.

All 19 players in camp will travel to Mexico, Jazz coach Jerry Sloan said Friday.

TICKETS GO ON SALE: Individual game tickets for the 2003-2004 Jazz season go on sale beginning at 9 this morning at the Delta Center, through all Ticketmaster outlets, by calling (801) 325-SEAT or by logging on to utahjazz.com or ticketmaster.com.

Comment on this story

Tickets are available in all price locations of the Delta Center's upper bowl, as well as in the lower bowl's $82, $76 and $70 sections.

Tickets for preseason home games vs. Seattle on Oct. 11 and Philadelphia on Oct. 17 also are on sale.


E-mail: tbuckley@desnews.com