SEATTLE After sitting out two straight games due to a severely bruised tailbone, Ronnie Brewer hopes to play tonight.
"I'm anxious to get back," the Jazz's starting shooting guard said Tuesday, before practicing for the first time since he sustained the injury in last Wednesday's win at Denver.
Still, Brewer isn't sure if he'll be good to go or not tonight in Seattle. He's being called a "game-time decision" by the Jazz.
Also uncertain: Brewer's status for Friday's Rookie-Sophomore Challenge game in New Orleans, part of NBA All-Star Weekend.
"It's a great honor to be in the rookie-sophomore game, but this team (the Jazz) comes first, and my health is the most important thing," said Brewer, who along with Utah backup power forward Paul Millsap was selected to play for the sophomores.
"So," Brewer added, "I've got to get healthy. And if I'm healthy I'm gonna play in (Friday's) game. But if I'm not 100 percent, I'm not gonna play."
Brewer intends to travel to New Orleans whether he's available or not for the exhibition game."Just to be around those guys," he said, "is a great experience."
LAST TRIP? Should the Sonics wind up moving to Oklahoma City, as some suspect could happen as soon as next season because of venue issues in Seattle, this will be the Jazz's final trip to the city.
"They've got to get a new arena," point guard Deron Williams said. "It's that simple."
"It would be unfortunate (if the Sonics left)," shooting guard Kyle Korver added. "I like Seattle. I've always enjoyed it. It rains a lot, but it's got a nice little feel downtown."
If the Sonics do exit, some with the Jazz suggested, Seattle-area faithful may be the biggest losers.
"Oklahoma City has great fans too," power forward Carlos Boozer said, "but they've been in Seattle so long (since 1967) that it would be nice for the team to be able to stay there.""Seattle is a wonderful city," added coach Jerry Sloan, whose 1995-96 club lost a memorable seven-game Western Conference finals series to the Sonics. "I think their fans have always been pretty good up there ... Personally, I hate to see them change it."
HE SAID IT: Seattle point guard Earl Watson, about the Jazz, to the Seattle Times: "It's amazing how they're playing so good but no one is talking about them. They remind me of a San Antonio team like a younger version of San Antonio, because they have everything. Korver is the first time in a long time that I can remember that they ever had a knock-down, dead 3-point shooter. That was all they were really lacking, that element. Now they have everything they need to have the whole ingredient to win a championship."
HE SAID IT II: Denver Nuggets coach George Karl, about the Jazz, to the Denver Post: "I think Kyle Korver has influenced Utah's freedom to shoot the 3. ... Korver, Deron Williams, Mehmet Okur they're more confident and more free to shoot it. Coach Sloan's teams (previously) have had a little more discipline in taking the defended 3. Now, they shoot shots with guys' hands up."
TV TALK: The Jazz's Feb. 29 game at New Orleans has been picked up by ESPN, replacing previously planned Washington-at-Chicago.
The game can still be seen locally on KJZZ, and remains a 6 p.m. (mountain time) start.It will mark the sixth ESPN appearance for Utah this season, with one additional ESPN game scheduled April 4 vs. San Antonio. The Jazz are 3-2 on the network this season. They've also won their lone TNT game this season, with one TNT game remaining March 20 vs. the Los Angeles Lakers.
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