The NBA lockout is not stopping the Development League from moving forward with its upcoming season.
The Idaho Stampede, the Utah Jazz's new D-League affiliate, are scheduled to hold an open tryout from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at the XSI Factory in Lehi. Registration starts at 9 a.m. More information can be found here.
The Stampede are coached by former NBA guard Randy Livingston, who briefly played for the Jazz during the 2004-05 season.
"The season for us has been on the way for a few weeks now," Livingston said. "We're just having one of our free agent tryout camps, and that's one of our ways to obtain players, so we're kind of hitting that hard."
Saturday's tryout will mark the third open workout session for the Stampede, who are also affiliated with Portland and Denver.
Livingston acknowledged that the Stampede have not had any contact with the Jazz since the organization's former D-League team, the Utah Flash, were put up for sale. He expects that to change, though, once the NBA lockout ends. Livingston has a good relationship with Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin, and highly respects the Utah organization.
"We're just going to keep chugging along, regardless of what happens with the labor process," Livingston said. "It's a very unique time for our league as [the NBA is] having their situation being unfolded. It's unique in terms of exposure for our league. Guys that normally wouldn't have a chance, just in terms of these tryouts, to play in our league have their best chance possible to play in our league this year."
Stampede assistant coach Joel Abelson said that forward Willie Jenkins is the only player currently under contract with the Stampede.
"I think at some point the NBA will get their deal done. And when training camp starts, we'll probably lose anywhere from between 50 to 75 percent of our roster," Livingston said. "So guys that we do see in these tryout camps, it's important that they do put on a good showing. Because in previous years, maybe after the tryout camp, they wouldn't make it; it'd be the end of the road for them. Now, there's another life for them per se and it's an opportunity for them to get seen."
Brian T. Smith