Jazz point guard Devin Harris wants to make it work in Utah.
Despite being made available to teams during the 2011 NBA Draft, Harris sees the Jazz as an ideal long-term fit and wants to continue to build on what the rebuilding franchise started midway through the 2011-12 season.
Harris joined the Jazz on Feb. 23, after being traded for Deron Williams. Utah went just 8-16 after the change, while Harris struggled with a lingering hamstring injury. He was sharp at times, though, offering glimpses of his former All-Star self. Harris averaged 15.8 points and 5.4 assists in 17 games (16 starts) for the Jazz, shooting 41.3 percent from the floor and 35.7 percent behind the 3-point line.
Harris, 28, has played for three teams during his seven NBA seasons, and has often been the focus of trade rumors. He sees potential in the Jazz, though, and would prefer to settle in with Utah rather than adjust to another organization.
The veteran guard has stayed in touch with several Jazz teammates since the 2010-11 season ended. He has formed a close relationship with center Al Jefferson, while bonding with coach Tyrone Corbin. Harris, Jefferson, Derrick Favors and Jeremy Evans are expected to work out this week at P3 in Santa Barbara, Calif., getting in a final training session prior to an expected NBA lockout.
Harris is set to make $9.3 million next season and $8.5 million in 2012-13. He will be the only point guard on Utah's roster after June 30. Earl Watson and Ronnie Price will become unrestricted free agents July 1.
Harris has stayed busy since the conclusion of the 2010-11 campaign, alternating travel with time in Dallas and Wisconsin. He is expected to throw out the first pitch July 7 for a Cincinnati-Milwaukee game. The Milwaukee native is a longtime baseball fan and grew up playing the sport.
Brian T. Smith
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