The Jazz need plenty of gifts from Santa this Christmas.
Utah is in the bottom third of the NBA in points (No. 27), assists (No. 27), field goal percentage (No. 24), 3-point shot percentage (No. 23), scoring efficiency (No. 25), rebounds (No. 24) and rebound differential (No. 25). Last but certainly not least, the Jazz are dead last in the Western Conference with an 8-22 record.
But there’s one thing that the Jazz would like for Christmas more than anything, including wins:
Whether or not the Jazz are intentionally tanking to pick up a lottery pick, a guarantee to pick up Parker would be the best Christmas gift the Jazz could ask for. The 6-foot-8, 235-pound forward averages 22.1 points, 7.8 rebounds and 1.9 assists per game.4 comments on this story
Sure, Utah would benefit from any of the other top prospects, including Andrew Wiggins, Julius Randle and Aaron Gordon. But Parker brings more to the table than just great basketball.
He would draw crowds to EnergySolutions Arena in droves.
Parker is LDS, and even though he chose Duke over BYU he still has a solid following from the local LDS community. Plus, he wouldn’t divide BYU and Utah fans the same way that Jimmer Fredette would if he came to Salt Lake City.
Despite all of the Jazz’ other problems, if they could receive the gift of Parker for Christmas, they would smile all the way through the difficult season ahead.
Lafe Peavler is a sportswriter intern at the Deseret News.