Imagine you’ve built your dream home. It has everything you could possibly want. You want the open floor plan? It’s yours. Luxurious master bedroom and on-suite? Done. Two car garage? Built to your specifications. Landscaped yard with a water feature and outdoor kitchen with wet bar to entertain? Throw in massive five-burner grill, and you are set.
What about that custom designed theater room with 7.1 surround sound and projection system? We’ll even throw in the canned lighting with dimmer feature.
The house has character. It’s designed and built exactly how you envisioned it. You begin moving in and getting unpacked. You’re just about settled in.
You host your first house party in epic fashion, with a plethora of guests and friends. Everyone compliments you on the design, flow, and character of your newly acquired mansion. The event is a smash and you are feeling pretty damn good about where you’re at.
The next morning you wake up to find that you’ve been robbed. The theater room has been stripped bare, while your grill was swiped off the beautiful rock tile patio. The backyard has been left in shambles.
You’re entertaining value has just been decimated. You’ve taken a hit and are in the midst of a setback. You’ve already made plans to host a few business and family events within the coming month. Everything you’ve worked to build for the last six months is gone. Let’s be frank, the near future is not looking good.
What do you do?
The good news is, the foundation remains. Your home’s floor plan and structure stands secure. Sure you’ve lost some pizzazz and entertaining value, for the moment, but the structure’s character remains intact.
The Utah Jazz are that beautiful home. They’ve built a foundation, structure, and even character depth. Their greatest asset is their identity. They will defend the hell out of you. Quin Snyder commands a battleship built to defend. He requires effort, toughness and efficiency.
They had that 7.1 surround sound – Gordon Hayward on one side, Rudy Gobert on the other, complimented by players to fill the other channels. They boasted entertainment value. The future looked extremely bright – hosting playoff rounds and winning at a consistently high level. Then, in an instant, Boston strips him clean from the Jazz. To be fair, he left vs a Boston theft.
Still, the result is the same. The house is left decimated. The landscape in shambles and the future plans take a pretty heavy hit.
However, as with the house analogy, the Jazz foundation and character remains intact. After all, it is the house that Larry built. Setbacks? Sure. Retooling? Absolutely. But the identity remains the same.
In fact, the replacement pieces have arrived. They compliment the existing components, perfectly.
Rudy Gobert stands as an anchor on a defense built to frustrate and stymie the opposition. The Jazz are in the business to win. They do so by developing talent and achieving maximum efficiency. Coach Snyder has instituted a system. Dennis Lindsey searches out talent and character that fits that system.
With Hayward gone, it’s time to rearrange the furniture and add complimentary pieces that funnel to a new focal point.
Make your guest lists, send out your RSVP requests. The party is still on. In fact, invite the high profile guests – the Bostons, Miamis, and Golden States. It’s time to host that house warming party and show them you still got it.
The Jazz will still be competitive. I expect they’ll make the playoffs too. Want my prediction – 48 decibels to be exact. That’s wins for those who want the basketball translation. They’ll make noise, continue to command respect, and force other teams to take notice. I expect them to be tops in the league in defense.
Donovan Mitchell, Rodney Hood, maybe even Jonas Jerebko will not only cover the wound, but likely help us forget the one who shall no longer be named. Especially that Jerebko kid who’s already endeared himself to Jazz fans with his calls to a time not long forgotten. He rides in on the whispers and echos of Karl Malone and Andre Kirilenko.
Listen carefully and you may just hear the wind whispering (or maybe it’s Jazz fans joining their voices in unity):
Good bye G to the H. Nice knowing you. We’re on to bigger and better things. Come on back, anytime. Just don’t expect a warm welcome or thank you card. Certainly don’t expect an homage to be hanging on the bare wall you left.
That garden gnome we sculpted in your honor? It doesn’t seem right to place it next to the statues, so we’re using it to prop the door open. It seemed only fitting.
We’re not selling the house. Nor are we demolishing and rebuilding. It’s more a redesign. We’ve repainted and added more french accents. Hell, you might say we boast a more complete tour of the world.
Call it what you will. In the end, we’ve moved on. We’re building a new life of luxury and it suits us well.