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Utah Jazz notebook: Kyle Weaver cheered up by call up

Published: Friday, July 3 2015 11:31 p.m. MDT

SALT LAKE CITY — Kyle Weaver wasn't in the best of moods Tuesday night when he got some spirit-lifting news.

After his D-League team lost to Reno, the Austin guard found out that he'd be changing uniforms — and leagues.

Weaver had been called up to join the injury-ravaged Utah Jazz.

"I was a little upset at the time," Weaver said. "I got the news and I was a little down. It was kind of like I didn't know how to feel, but it kind of hit me (the next day) when I got in (to Utah)."

He's been busy smiling and learning the Jazz system ever since.

"It's a good feeling," Weaver said.

A day after being signed to a 10-day contract by the Jazz — who are currently without injured guards Devin Harris, Raja Bell and Ronnie Price — Weaver made his debut in a Utah uniform Friday.

But it wasn't the first taste of the NBA for the Jazz's new No. 3. The 6-foot-6 guard was drafted by Charlotte (38th overall) in 2008, and then played during two seasons with Oklahoma City after being traded.

The Washington State product even started 19 times for the Thunder in his 68 games, and averaged 4.9 points, 2.2 rebounds, 1.6 assists and 19.3 minutes in his first NBA stint from 2008-10.

Weaver believes he would have remained in the league if it weren't for a shoulder injury that led to his exit last year.

"I was pretty close," he said. "My injury set me back a little bit. ... I was comfortable there and I had a role there (in OKC)."

Now Weaver hopes to make a name and find a spot for himself in Utah.

Weaver, usually a shooting guard, said he feels bad about the Jazz injury situation, but he knows this is a prime audition opportunity for him to work his way back into the NBA.

Offensively, he is getting a baptism-by-fire at point guard — which he played in his first appearance Friday. He said his goal is to show leadership, work hard and involve teammates.

Weaver also hopes to impress on the other end.

"Defensively," he said, "I just want to be a pest out here."

And do whatever the Jazz need the 25-year-old to do.

"I'll play the five if I have to," he said, smiling. "I'll guard (Andrew) Bynum. Whatever I have to do."

Weaver has a connection on the team. He's from Beloit, Wis., giving the Jazz a second cheesehead. He used to work basketball camps in high school for Harris, the other ex-Wisconsinite.

Weaver said he looked up to Harris and his ascension into the Association while growing up. And he's picked his brain since joining the Jazz.

"It's just kind of funny being one of his teammates now. It's cool," Weaver said. "He'll probably be tired of me pretty soon."

CHANGING PLACES: The Jazz used their 17th different starting lineup of the season Friday by sending Earl Watson, C.J. Miles, Paul Millsap, Al Jefferson and Kyrylo Fesenko to the court at tipoff time.

This starting five featured two firsts for the season: Fesenko had to yet to begin a game on the court, and Jefferson hadn't started at any position other than center.

FACES IN THE CROWD: They might not be Hollywood A-listers like the Lakers draw in L.A. But local celebrities — including Hall of Famer John Stockton, RSL goalie Nick Rimando and ex-BYU football standout/Pittsburgh Steelers player Chris Hoke — were in the crowd for the showdown with the two-time defending NBA champions.

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