No offers piquing interest
By Lya Wodraska and Steve Luhm The Salt Lake Tribune
With Thursday's trade deadline rapidly approaching, Jazz vice president of basketball operations Kevin O'Connor has had a lot of conversations with a lot of teams. . . . But nothing has jumped out at us so far.
O'Connor believes a flurry of trades will be made before the deadline because there is a lot of interest - a lot of talk - going on around the league."
Asked what the chances are that the Jazz will be involved in a trade, O'Connor smiled and said, I don't know.
I'm fine, really
All of Utah's players claim to be fresh and well-rested thanks to the All-Star break. But none tried to be more convincing than rookie Robert Whaley.
Whaley, who has been out of the lineup because of knee surgery, said he feels he is about 75 percent and eager to get out of his suits and into his uniform. Whaley was informed he had to have surgery to repair the medial meniscus in his right knee when he showed up for Utah's game against Seattle on Jan. 25. The news shocked him, and he has been anxiously awaiting to get clearance to play.
"If it was up to me, I'd be back playing again," he said, jumping up and down to emphasize he is good to go. "I had a little rest over the break, but did rehab, mostly. I haven't been taking it easy."
Whaley won't get his wish any time soon. Jazz trainer Gary Briggs said while his rehab is going well, he is still probably two weeks away from playing again.
Whaley once had the same surgery on his left leg, but said the Jazz are being more careful with this rehab than his previous experience.
"They're being patient and working with me," Whaley said.
All is well
Keith McLeod's top worry has gone from wondering if he'd ever play again to wondering how to help the Jazz get into the playoffs.
McLeod, who suffered chest pains shortly before the All-Star break, underwent a battery of tests that cleared him of any potential heart problems. The pain was attributed to flu-like symptoms.
"They cleared me, so I'm not going to worry about it too much and just play," he said. "If everyone gets their focus together on the rest of the season, making the playoffs is possible."
McLeod started Tuesday's game.
And in other locations
Jazz coach Jerry Sloan spent his All-Star break on his farm in Illinois, Gordan Giricek went to Hawaii and Jarron Collins enjoyed the beaches of Cabo San Lucas. Andrei Kirilenko and his family stayed closer to home, driving down to the Grand Canyon. The Russian didn't seem that impressed with the canyon. "It was OK," he said. "It was just something you drive to see; what can you say about it?"
Boston's Wally Szczerbiak, acquired from Minnesota in a trade an. 26, went down just 3:22 into the game. He bruised his left knee and didn't return. He finished with three points, an assist and a turnover.