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Jazz Notes: Forward Jeremy Evans patiently waits his turn

Published January 6, 2012 7:24 pm

Jazz forward seemingly content despite limited playing time.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

The Jazz's Jeremy Evans is the fifth man in a four-player rotation in the post.

His minutes reflect the situation.

Through six games, Evans has played 27 total minutes, including only three in back-to-back wins over New Orleans and Milwaukee.

A former second-round draft pick from Western Kentucky, Evans is stuck behind Al Jefferson, Paul Millsap, Derrick Favors and Enes Kanter in the Jazz's center-power forward rotation.

Still, Evans remains as upbeat as ever­— always smiling and seemingly content.

"Of course you always want to play," Evans said. "But we're winning now and that's what we're here for."

Evans averages only two points a game, but he's made five of his six field-goal attempts and has blocked three shots — one every nine minutes he's on the floor.

When Evans plays, good things have happened for the Jazz.

"When I first got here, I learned I have to stay ready," he said. "You never know what's going to happen … so I just try to stay in shape and stay ready."

Coach Tyrone Corbin admits finding minutes for Evans has been difficult, but he's pleased with his progress.

"He's in a position where we are relatively deep," Corbin said. "But Jeremy is great, man. He's a great guy. He's a tremendous worker. He's learning.

"From game-to-game and from last year to this year, he's made tremendous strides," Corbin added. "His body has gotten better. He's done everything you ask a guy to do to continue to grow."

Building Burks

Rookie Alec Burks hopes to build off his best NBA game so far.

Burks had nine points and six assists in 28 minutes in the Jazz's 85-73 win over the Bucks on Tuesday night.

"I'm just trying to show the coaches I can be aggressive if they put me in," he said. "Give me the minutes and I'll try to be productive. That's all I'm doing."

A slashing, ball-handing wing player, Burks shot 10 free throws against Milwaukee, bumping his season total to 13 in 56 minutes.

By comparison, Millsap has shot 16 free throws in 161 minutes. Jefferson has attempted 15 in 160.

"That's what I prided myself in college," Burks said. "I feel like that's what got me to the [NBA] draft — the way I got to the basket and got to the free-throw line. I'm going to keep doing that. Keep staying aggressive."

The Big 8-Oh

Former coach, general manager and president Frank Layden celebrated his 80th birthday Thursday. His son, Scott, remains a Jazz assistant coach.

luhm@sltrib.com