Jazz notes: Tinsley finds different team in Utah
By Steve Luhm
The Salt Lake TribuneFirst published Oct 27 2013 01:47PM
Jamaal Tinsley has joined a different-looking team in Utah.
The veteran point guard knows it.
After spending two seasons with the Jazz, Tinsley was a free agent all summer before re-joining them Saturday.
"I was just waiting for a call," he said. "It’s an opportunity. This was one of the places I wanted to come back to. ... I told my agent, if Utah calls, I want to go back. I’m just comfortable with the organization and the system."
In his two years with the Jazz, Tinsley played 103 games, including 33 starts. Last season, he averaged 3.5 points and 4.4 assists in 18.5 minutes.
Utah, of course, lost four of its top five scorers from a year ago because of free agency and trades.
Asked about playing on a team being led by Gordon Hayward, Derrick Favors and Enes Kanter instead of Al Jefferson, Paul Millsap and Mo Williams, Tinsley smiled.
"It’s a big difference — a bunch of younger guys, guys wanting to get better every day," he said. "[But] the sky’s the limit for them. Go out there and compete hard. Do the little things that win games."
Tinsley’s teammates seem glad he’s back.
"Excited about it," Hayward said. "He knows the system. He knows how to find guys when they’re open. He’s been in the league, so he knows the game really well. Just a high basketball IQ. Makes good passes and good plays."
French center Gobert plays like lottery pick
Rudy Gobert didn’t play like the 27th pick in the draft late in the preseason.
Gobert, the Jazz’s 7-foot-1 rookie center, finished with 16 points, nine rebounds and four blocked shots in 25 minutes during a 111-106 loss to the Lakers on Friday night.
Two nights earlier, Gobert produced four points, 12 rebounds and five blocks in only 20 minutes during a 103-99 loss to the Clippers.
"He’s done a good job listening," coach Tyrone Corbin said. "There has been a lot of stuff thrown at him. He’s now starting to figure out how to understand what we’ve thrown at him and how to implement it more. ... He’s made great strides for us."
Veteran reaches out to rookie Burke
After the Jazz traded up and took point guard Trey Burke with the ninth pick in last summer’s draft, Tinsley reached out to him.
"I told him, ‘This is going to be a good pace for you,’ " Tinsley recalled. "They are going to treat him good. He just has to go out there and do what he does best — play basketball."
Burke suffered a fractured right index finger in a preseason game against the Clippers on Oct. 12. He underwent surgery three days later.
At the time, the Jazz announced Burke would be re-evaluated in three weeks to determine an official timeline for his return.
"It’s unfortunate he went down with an injury," Tinsley said. "But everything happens for a reason. Now he gets a chance to sit back and learn."