Jazz notes: Corbin plans in-depth evaluation of team
Everything is on the table for the Jazz's new coach.
Tyrone Corbin said Saturday he plans to evaluate everything from Utah's starting five to whether the injury-depleted team needs to add a player via a 10-day contract as he tries to move it away from the Jerry Sloan era into a new frontier.
Small forward C.J. Miles is a candidate to possibly replace veteran guard Raja Bell at the 2 position in the starting lineup, while the fact that Utah was down to just nine active players by the end of a 95-83 home loss to Phoenix on Friday wasn't lost on Corbin.
General manager Kevin O'Connor said Wednesday that it was unlikely the Jazz would reach out to deepen their roster, instead relying on rookie forward Jeremy Evans to step up. But that was before Andrei Kirilenko, Ronnie Price and Raja Bell were temporarily lost to injuries. Veteran Utah center Mehmet Okur is also expected to be out at least the remainder of the month due to a strained lower back, while reserve big man Francisco Elson is battling left knee tendinitis.
"It may be something that we have to look at a little bit more," said Corbin, prior to practice at the team workout facility. "Right now, it's just a little bit too early."
He added: "We certainly can't play for an extended period of time with nine guys, and two of those guys being rookies."
Rookie forward Gordon Hayward recorded 30 minutes in the loss to Phoenix, tying a mark for his second-longest stint on the court all season. He responded well, hitting all five of his field goals, grabbing four rebounds and finishing with 14 points.
But he's beginning to sound like a veteran when discussing a strong individual performance that was coupled with a losing team effort.
"I feel like I played better. But it's still a loss, so that's what gets at me," Hayward, 20, said.
Taking it easy
Kirilenko (sprained right ankle) didn't practice Saturday and is day-to-day. He was forced to leave the court during the second quarter of Utah's loss to Phoenix due to the injury. X-rays following the game were negative, though.
Price (sprained right big toe) and Bell (strained left calf) went through a light workout and are also day-to-day.