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Utah Jazz: Williams takes wait-and-see approach to union trouble

By Steve Luhm

The Salt Lake Tribune

First published Jan 18 2013 11:06AM
Updated Jan 19, 2013 12:09AM

Utah Jazz player representative Mo Williams took a wait-and-see approach Friday to a just-released report that criticized NBA Players Association executive director Billy Hunter.

The law firm of Paul, Weiss, Rifkin, Wharton & Garrison LLP conducted an independent eight-month investigation and suggested the players association re-evaluate whether Hunter should be retained as head of the union.

No criminal behavior was discovered, but the report revealed Hunter withheld knowledge that his $3 million-a-year contract was never properly approved.

The report also claims Hunter used poor judgment in his hiring practices and spent money improperly on travel and gifts.

Asked about the situation, Williams did not want to guess how the union will respond to the report.

"My first wind of it was [Thursday], like the world," Williams said. "I knew there was an investigation going on, and I was just waiting on the results. ...

"As a union, we’ll go from [here]. They are doing their due diligence. They’ll get to the bottom line of it. But all we can do right now is sit and wait and hope for the best."

Williams benefits from break

Jazz forward Marvin Williams has been bothered by a sore knee this season, but coach Tyrone Corbin says he has benefited from a four-day break between games.

According to Corbin, Williams will start Saturday night against Cleveland at EnergySolutions Arena.

Williams has missed seven of Utah’s first 40 games, but he practiced Thursday and Friday.

"I thought the rest was good for him," Corbin said. "We’ll monitor how he’s going so he doesn’t get the soreness in his leg again. But he’s looked good."

Williams averages 8.8 points and 3.5 rebounds. He shoots 34.1 percent from the field. He played 33 minutes in Monday night’s 104-97 win over Miami, finishing with five points on 2-for-8 shooting.

"He does a great job defensively for us," Corbin said. "He’s been a great player for us. He can make shots — timely 3-point shots. But he does a good job all the time on defense.

"He plays his man, his rotations are good, and he’s a good team defender for us. It’s not all about scoring points. It’s about doing the right things to help us win."

Jefferson: Don’t take Cavs lightly

Jazz center Al Jefferson has played on struggling teams in the past. He knows how the Cavaliers will approach their game against Utah.

"You can’t judge a team by their record," Jefferson said. "They are going to come in here ready to play. When I was on those type of teams, other teams used to think they’d get an easy win. That’s when we’d come in and sneak one.

"Maybe we’d lose 10 after that, but we’d get that one. So you have to be ready to play every game. We have to treat them just like we treated the defending champs. We have to go out with that type of mindset and confidence."

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