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Aaron Guile: Derrick Favors — The Warrior

Published: Saturday, Aug. 29 2015 7:53 p.m. MDT

NBA.com announced the Utah Jazz “waived forwards Brian Cook and Dominic McGuire, and guards Justin Holiday, Lester Hudson and Scott Machado Sunday, while keeping Mike Harris and hiring back Jamaal Tinsley.

Deseret News Jazz beatwriter Jody Genessy reported Jazz head coach Tyrone Corbin likes Harris’ “big body” and hard work, which earned Harris a spot on the Jazz roster.

I think that’s great, but “big body?” Really? I'm a "big body" (call me Ty, I'm packed and ready to go).

Sure, Harris is taller than me (I weigh more, but that is due to my untouchable doughnut excellence), but how does he compare to the real “big body” on the Jazz, Derrick Favors?

According to NBA.com, Harris weighs in at 235 pounds. I passed Harris on the doughnut-o-meter my college freshman year in 1990. Favors is 263 pounds of rippling 6-foot-10 muscle.

Favors is the real beef on the Jazz. The problem is the Jazz need more than a hunk of beef stock clogging the frontcourt and snagging rebounds. If the Jazz needed a chunk of beef down low, they could recruit me.

The Jazz have never had anyone of my beefery at 6-1 and 325 pounds of doughnut power down low in the paint.

No, the Jazz do not need some seedy cow like me.

The Jazz need a warrior — maybe two or three. I am glad Harris is on the team, but he does not raise comparisons to well-known battlers like Favors does.

Dan Favale in Bleacher Report recently wrote:

“Almost every up-and-coming big, however, gets (compared to Houston Rockets’ Dwight) Howard. I myself did it with Andre Drummond not too long ago. And ESPN Rise did it with Favors himself in 2008, before he even entered the NBA. That's what happens. Howard is the standard to which all other towers are held.”

Favale compared Favors to Howard because Favors is tall, athletic, rebounds, scores and defends. Favale insists, however, for a real comparison, Favors will need to average a double-double in 30 or more minutes per game.

I do not think Favors is Howard. The opposite is fortunately true as well: Favors isn’t the megalomaniac Howard is. The Jazz does not need a Howard. The Jazz need a silent killer. Favors’ stats dictate he is this type of player as long as he can put in the 30 minutes or more of dirty work the Jazz are going to need.

Regarding the type of player Favors is, Bleacher Report's Andy Bailey recertly wrote:

“Favors' offensive skills have very little to do with why he was extended on such a lucrative deal.

“Defensively, he's the monster around which Utah can build an entire scheme.

“Look at what rim-protecting bigs like Roy Hibbert, Marc Gasol and Joakim Noah do for their teams' respective defenses. The Jazz are confident Favors can do the same.”

Hope and theory make up the speculative nature of these comparisons.

If Favors could have replaced Paul Millsap last year, it would have happened. Last year, Favors did not have the experience or stature of a Howard, Hibbert, Gasol or Noah. Hoopsworld’s Stephen Brotherston quotes a hypothesizing Al Jefferson, formerly of the Utah Jazz: “When you are a rookie, a young player, the game moves fast, but as you get older and been around, it slows down until you start to understand where it’s coming from.

"That’s the difference. Everybody knew (Favors) had talent, that’s why he was drafted so high. Now he is starting to understand the game and it is starting to slow down for him and he is adjusting well to it.”

Jefferson thought Favors needed the time to develop and adjust to the NBA’s pace. The Jazz front office obviously agreed, to a point.

The Jazz changed their minds by letting Millsap seek greener pastures in Atlanta over the summer and by giving Favors an exceptionally nice contract extension.

There is more to being a basketball warrior than stats and legs. There is attitude as well. Utah knows the kind of necessary attitude it takes to be a basketball warrior. Fans witnessed the stoic aggression of backcourt assassin John Stockton and the pride-filled passion of Karl Malone. Favors is just not this kind of person.

But I have hope.

Malone used to say he did his talking on the court, which he did plenty of, but he also did loads of talking to the press. The national press liked Malone almost as much as they loved defensive specialist Dennis Rodman. Favors doesn’t talk nearly as much as either Malone or Rodman. Everyone would like to see Favors to do all his talking on the court.

Favors and Malone play basketball much differently as well.

During the preseason, Favors averaged only 26.5 minutes, 8.3 defensive rebounds, 9.4 points and 1.4 blocks per game. According to my tabulation, if his stats are adjusted to 36 minutes a game, he would average 11.2 defensive rebounds, 12.8 points and 1.9 blocks.

Malone averaged 37.2 minutes per game during his career. Reduced that figure to the 36-minute measurement and Malone would have averaged 7.5 defensive rebounds, 24.2 points and 0.8 blocks.

The defensive rebounding stat is the most interesting, rather than a combined rebounding stat because Favors is a defensive minded player first. If Favors is truly a better defensive rebounder than Malone (he owns the all-time rebound record at 11,406 rebound) and if Favors sticks it out for 19 years, it is conceivable that Favors could break Malone’s record, if Kevin Garnett doesn’t do it first. He os currently at 10,757 and counting.

The nice thing is Favors’ attitude is easier for a coach to deal with than Malone’s.

Still, I could cope with Favors being chippy with his opponents and demanding of his teammates. Not that I would complain if Favors never chips or demands and only competes with himself.

My only competitive claim to fame is quite safe from Favors. I am a doughnut warrior. I once ate 53.5 Krispy Kreme doughnuts in one sitting. The funnier story is what happened afterward.

Regardless, Favors is a warrior.

He is a young guy and is still to develop rivalries with other players or become famous for signature moves. I’m good with that.

Favors has many years to show what I believe in and what the stats speculate about and as a side note, if he wants to go doughnut for doughnut with me, I’m game. The only stipulation is he’s paying. He can afford it.

Twitter: @AaronGuile.

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