SALT LAKE CITY — Former Jazz fan favorite Kyle Korver returned to the place called home from the end of 2007 through the summer of 2010.
Before his new team beat his old team Wednesday, Korver made it clear that he still thinks Brigham Young was right about this being the place and indicated he'd be interested in possibly sporting a Jazz uniform again in the future.
"I always love coming back to Utah for a lot of reasons. I still have a lot of friends here, a lot of good memories," said the 31-year-old, who joined the Jazz midway through the 2007-08 season after Utah traded Gordan Giricek to the Sixers for him. "It's a fun arena to play in. It's always good to come back in Utah."
Korver made it a point to remind reporters that his contract with the Hawks ends this coming offseason.
Asked about his future, Korver looked into a TV camera at Atlanta's shootaround and said, "I am a free agent this summer — free agent this summer."
Korver, traded to Atlanta from Chicago last summer, then smiled.
"I mean, yeah. I would definitely listen to Utah if they came asking," the 10-year NBA veteran said. "I have a lot of respect for the organization and the Miller family, and it was just a great place to live life and play basketball."
Overall, Korver thought it was a great fit for him — from the teams he was on, to the fans and to the picturesque Wasatch Front.
"I loved waking up and seeing the mountains every day," he said. "It's just a good lifestyle here in Utah."
Korver chuckled when asked about how his life has changed since he signed a free-agent contract with Chicago instead of returning to the Jazz in 2010. He's since been married and become a father of a baby girl.
"I'm a little older (32 on March 17). It's good, though," he said. "Life is definitely a lot different than when I was here living the bachelor life with my brother (Klay). Life's a lot different now, but it's good. It's a welcome change."
The dynamic has changed, though. It's tougher for him to leave his family behind, especially in the situation he's currently in — a six-game swing away from Atlanta.
"It's hard to be on these road trips now. We've got an 11-day road trip and you're away from your family and you feel like you're leaving your wife to take care of the kid by herself," Korver said. "But these are all welcome changes for me. Something I've looked forward to for a long time."
Speaking of changes, Korver was asked if he helps his wife with diaper duty.
"I like changing the diapers. I actually ask to change the diapers," he said, laughing. "She's not taking formula yet, though, so diapers aren't that big of a deal right now. We'll see in a month or two if we're still changing diapers."
ZAZA ZINGER: When Marvin Williams passed reporters on his way from the arena to the locker room, he was sporting (sort of) a T-shirt that had been nearly torn in half. He jokingly told media to not ask about it.
So, of course, that was the first question when he returned for interviews.
The culprit? His former teammate in Atlanta, Zaza Pachulia.
"When I was in Atlanta, man, we went through a little stage when we were tearing guys' shirts off when they weren't looking," said Williams, who played the first seven seasons of his NBA career with the Hawks before being traded to Utah last summer. "I was out there talking to Josh (Smith at shootaround) and Zaza came and got me."
Williams joked back with the humorous Georgian.
"I told him my first foul was going to be for him (Wednesday)," he said. "Nah, I'll get him when the time's right, for sure."
When asked about Williams' shredded shirt, Pachulia turned to a Hawks PR representative and jokingly asked: "Is he from the FBI? Utah PD?"
A certain reporter's response: "KGB."
Pachulia smiled and explained his side of the story.Comment on this story
"Marvin, he's my brother. We've been sitting next to each other for seven years in our locker room. I'm a very close friend," the 6-foot-11 center said with his accented English. "I love Marvin and I miss him, so I got green light to make those kind of jokes."
BIRTHDAY BOY: Ex-Jazz point guard Devin Harris hit a half-court shot at the end of the Hawks' shootaround. He joked that it was a birthday present to himself. Harris celebrated his 30th birthday in the city he called home for just over a year from 2011-12. He had 12 points in Atlanta's 102-91 win.