The Golden State Warriors are hurt and decimated, and the rest of the Western Conference has taken notice.
On Sunday, as free agency began, the Utah Jazz made several moves that signaled that they are ready to take the next leaf and contend in the west. Utah signed Bogdan Bogdanovic and traded for Mike Conley.
Later in the day, reports surfaced that the Jazz had signed Brooklyn Nets big man Ed Davis. The deal was for two years and $10 million.
Davis has been a fan favorite and a positive veteran locker room presence just about everywhere he has gone. The Portland Trail Blazers let him go last season to help duck some luxury tax considerations, and he will surely shine with folks in Utah. He has the ability to play both frontcourt positions, which means that Davis can either backup 2019 DPOY Rudy Gobert or play beside him.
On offense, Davis is an offensive rebounding machine. A whopping 31.4 percent of his offensive possessions came on putback plays, where he ranked in the 76th percentile. Davis is a good enough defender, and played reasonably well against the pick-and-roll according to Synergy. Davis will be heading from the 14th-best team on defense to the second-best team in the Jazz, so the thought is a rising tide will lift all boats.
Five million per season doesn’t seem like a lot for the 30-year old Davis, and no doubt Blazers fans are going to curse themselves and their team front office as they watch him suit up for a Western Conference rival.