After spending more than three weeks with the Jazz, forward DeMarre Carroll said Friday he’s 100 percent ready to take the court.
Carroll used DVDs and an old-fashioned playbook to learn Utah’s offense. He understands what Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin wants from him. And he’s easily fit in on a team with no egos and a competitive but laid-back vibe.
But just because Carroll’s ready to go doesn’t mean he’s getting on the court. The third-year forward has played only 3 minutes since signing Feb. 9 with Utah, and his lone moment on the hardwood came Wednesday during garbage time in the Jazz’s 104-83 home win against Houston.
Carroll’s not frustrated, though. He’s taking a long-term approach to his limited time in action.
"It’s all about getting your opportunity. So I’ve just got to sit around and wait and continue to keep [focused]," said Carroll, prior to tipoff Friday against Miami.
Carroll has soaked up everything possible about Jazz basketball in 11 games. After catching Utah’s eye during the early part of his career, a player who’s competed for four teams in just three seasons is impressed by his new organization.
"It’s way different than most of the teams," Carroll said. "It’s a great team and everybody here is nice. … A lot of guys, like Jamaal [Tinsley], just pulled me to the side and teach me the plays and just teach me how to be a true professional. My hats go off to a lot of these guys."
Above the rest
Heat forward LeBron James’ statistical line during a win at Portland on Thursday was MVP-esque: 38 points, 11 rebounds, six assists and five steals.
Corbin acknowledged he was in awe of The King, saying James’ unique blend of size, speed and talent makes him among the premier athletes in the game.
"You can compare him to different guys, but I think he’s just different," Corbin said. "The body build, the athletic ability, his approach to the game — all the other great guys competed, but this guy, it’s just 48 minutes of just relentless attacking. … He’s some special athlete."
Utah guard Raja Bell (strained left adductor) missed his fifth consecutive game Friday. Corbin doesn’t think Bell will be able to play Saturday against Dallas since he’ll need time to regain his form. A return Monday at Cleveland is more likely.
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