Even with a fully healthy roster, the Utah Jazz were going to be thin at point guard this year. Rookie of the Year candidate Trey Burke projected to be the starter, but beyond him was a question mark. Burke, however, fractured his finger in last night’s preseason game against the Los Angeles Clippers. The latest reports indicate that he could be out anywhere from 3-6 weeks. That timetable still depends on Burke’s visit with a hand specialist, scheduled for Monday.
Hearing that injured Jazz rookie Trey Burke (broken right index finger) could be out anywhere from 3-6 weeks. Season starts in 2.5 weeks.
— Jody Genessy (@DJJazzyJody) October 13, 2013
It’s important to note that Trey Burke still has to be evaluated by a hand specialist Monday. It’s possible surgery will be recommended. — Jody Genessy (@DJJazzyJody) October 13, 2013
Regardless of the decisions made by the physicians and the Jazz, the team will be without Burke for at least a couple of weeks in the regular season. This pushes the expected backup, John Lucas III to the starting spot. Lucas is a career backup, only having started 2 of the 147 games he’s played in throughout his career. In order to help out Lucas and whoever else will get minutes at the point, the Jazz are reportedly looking to the trade market. One name that has surfaced in those reports is the Chicago Bulls‘ Marquis Teague.
Hearing: Utah has previously shown trade interest in Bulls’ Marquis Teague and could well revisit interest depending on Trey Burke timetable
— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) October 13, 2013
The Jazz completely turned the reigns over to their core of younger players, and adding the 20-year old Teague would fit their youth movement. In his rookie season, Teague played sparingly, but showed promise at the Las Vegas Summer League a few months ago, averaging about 18 points and 5 assists per game. Nick Friedell of ESPN Chicago wrote of Teague in his player preview that,
“His jump shot must improve for him to take the next step as an NBA player. To become more of a well-rounded player, Teague must develop into a better offensive threat and continue to work defensively.”
Just like the Jazz, Teague is a work in progress with hope for the future. With Derrick Rose back, Teague will be stuck on the bench in Chicago. It would certainly be interesting to see him on the Jazz in a situation where he is getting consistent playing time. We will have to wait and see if Utah’s interest is serious enough to deal for the young point guard. Until then, if it happens at all, the Jazz will have to just wait out Burke’s injury.