Given their precarious position with the NBA salary cap, it was thought the Utah Jazz were probably done adding to their roster. But when they saw an opportunity to bolster their team, they decided to go for it.
The Jazz on Wednesday agreed to a contract with free-agent guard Shaquille Harrison, a source confirmed to The Salt Lake Tribune.
Tony Jones of The Athletic was the first to report the deal, which will run one year for the league minimum.
Harrison is a 27-year-old entering his fourth season in the league. The NBA lists him as 6-foot-4 and 190 pounds. He will be called upon to help bolster the Jazz’s backcourt depth and their perimeter defense.
Though not much of an offensive presence — Harrison has career averages of 6.0 points and 1.7 assists, while shooting 44.8% from the field and 29.3% from deep — his time on the court has seen him emerge as a perimeter defensive specialist, quick enough to hang with speedy point guards, while strong and wiry enough to hold his own against twos.
Indeed, in Harrison’s 139 career games with the Phoenix Suns and Chicago Bulls, his accumulated defensive win shares have been more than 2.5 times greater than his offensive win shares. Though he projects as an end-of-rotation player, his presence will potentially be valuable, as the team had no one with a similar skill set to deploy against Jamal Murray, the Nuggets guard they failed to contain in their first-round loss to Denver this past postseason.
Though Harrison has been a subpar shooter to this point in his career, he has made some progress — improving from 23.1% beyond the arc as a rookie to 27.0% as a sophomore to 38.1% last year — albeit on a mere 42 total 3-point attempts in 2019-20.
Per The Athletic report, Harrison is recovering from a hand injury, but is expected to be at 100% physically within the first weeks of the regular season.