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Luhm: Retire Andrei Kirilenko’s No. 47? Not a bad idea


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In hindsight, Kirilenko was overpaid.

But I don’t think that’s a good enough reason to turn a blind eye toward all he accomplished during his days with the Jazz.

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What about all those injuries, you ask?

I learned a long time ago that doubting a player who says he’s injured is a recipe for inaccurate reporting.

Professionals play when they can, sit when they can’t and work diligently to return.

Those who believe otherwise are playing a dangerous game.

Were there nights when Kirilenko could have played at less than 100 percent?

Probably.

But in such a frame of mind, would he have been effective and helped the Jazz win?

Unlikely.


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Kirilenko was greeted warmly by Jazz fans Wednesday night, when he was introduced prior to Utah’s game against Minnesota.

He smiled and seemed genuinely touched by the reception.

Kirilenko’s response showed that, despite a few bumps along the way, his years with the Jazz remain close to his heart.

Should the franchise ever contemplate retiring No. 47, I don’t believe the arguments against it would outweigh the reasons for doing so.



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