Utah Jazz: Power forward Malcolm Thomas claimed off waivers
SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Jazz have a full house again.
Power forward Malcolm Thomas was picked up off of waivers by the organization Saturday, bringing the team's roster to the league maximum of 15 players.
Thomas is a 6-foot-9, 225-pound power forward who most recently played for San Antonio before being waived by the Spurs on Thursday.
Though Thomas has limited NBA playing time, Jazz general manager Dennis Lindsey said the 25-year-old is “someone who stood out for us” since he came out of San Diego State in 2011.
“He’s someone we tracked for a number of years now,” Lindsey said. “We think it’s a potential good fit for (Thomas) and us. We just want to take him through the rest of the year and see where he’s at relative to our team.”
The Jazz will be responsible for the remaining portion of Thomas’ $884,293 salary he’s making this season.
The undrafted player only played in one game for the Spurs, totaling nine rebounds and two points against the Bucks on Jan. 19. But he has played in the NBA for the Spurs (his rookie season), Bulls and Warriors.
“He’s an athletic, mobile power forward that has improved his shooting range over the last few years,” Lindsey said. “We don’t want to overstate the call-up, but he’s a kid that has good character. He’s played on wining team.”
Thomas averaged 14.8 points, 9.8 rebounds and 2.2 blocks in 38 D-League games with four different teams in his pro career. He's also played internationally in Korea and Israel. The big man played at SDSU from 2009-11, ranking No. 2 in Aztec history in blocks and eighth in rebound average. He began his collegiate career with stints at Pepperdine and San Diego City College.
Thomas is not yet in Utah, so the earliest he could sport a Jazz uniform is Monday night. He’ll wear No. 22.
“Many times a player is not ready on the first couple of call-ups or maybe they’re ready and the opportunity didn’t present itself,” Lindsey said. “We’ll treat him well, coach him hard and we’ll see where his development goes this year and into the offseason.”
OUCH: While Jazz forward Jeremy Evans was getting ready for Saturday’s game in the locker room, locker neighbor Gordon Hayward appeared shocked while looking at his teammate. Evans’ upper left arm was dotted with bumps.
"Did you get bit by a mosquito?" Hayward asked.
Even worse. Evans received 16 shots — two rows of eight, symmetrically aligned — in his arm for allergies.
“It itches,” Evans said.
Not surprisingly, Evans then received more friendly razzing than empathy from his teammates.
QUICK TRIP: The Jazz were home all week, but their coach left town for an overnight adventure. Tyrone Corbin flew to Los Angeles on Thursday after practice and then drove to Bakersfield, Calif., to watch his son, Tyrell, play for the Roadrunners.
Corbin drove back to L.A. after watching the former Utah Mr. Basketball score seven points in CSU Bakersfield’s 71-63 loss to Chicago State. He then took a 6 a.m. flight back to Salt Lake City to make it back for the Jazz’s 11 a.m. practice.
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