Scott Layden scoffs at the notion the Utah Jazz were undermined in their effort to obtain Rony Seikaly. The team's vice president of basketball operations said such talk is prime material for tabloid television shows like "Hard Copy."
The deal, he insists, is a dead issue."We've got far greater things to concern ourselves with than worry about the Nets or Rony Seikaly or that," Layden said after Jazz practice Friday at Westminster College. "This conspiracy theory floating around, I don't buy it."
Speculation that New Jersey management or Seikaly's agent, Steve Kauffman, orchestrated the demise of an agreement between Utah and Orlando has made the rounds on sports-talk radio and television. The Jazz voided a trade that would have sent Greg Foster and Chris Morris to Orlando when Seikaly failed to report to Utah within the 48-hour period outlined in the NBA's Collective Bargaining Agreement.
"It was kaput when he didn't show. That was it," Layden said. "I'm not going to get into our discussions - we never do about trades or what have you - but it's over. So we're just moving on."
Layden remained steadfast in refusing to answer specific questions concerning Seikaly. He did reiterate, however, that the Jazz would never waive the 48-hour rule for reporting or physical examinations for players involved in trades.
Seikaly failed to do either for Utah.
"Whatever the reason, and I told (everybody) at the press conference and I mean this, you're going to start seeing the spins come out. Seikaly's little spin and his agent and all that," Layden said. "But you just have to take that on face value and judge us and judge the people who are giving the spin. The point is we didn't want this to happen and clearly that wasn't the intent of being able to trade players."
The Jazz will not appeal to the NBA for assistance.
"It's over," Layden said. "And like I said I don't buy into the conspiracy theory."
Even if it were true, he added, what could be done about it?
"It's silly to even talk about," Layden said. "I don't see it at all."