New Jazz GM says fans deserve competitive team

Aug 6, 2019, 1:21 PM
Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (45) is all smiles as he back-pedals up the court after nailing a three pointer during the Utah Jazz versus Denver Nuggets NBA game at the Vivint Smart Home Arena in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, April 9, 2019. (Steve Griffin, Deseret News)
(Steve Griffin, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — New Utah Jazz General Manager Justin Zanik is excited about the upcoming NBA season — and what the season will bring to the fans.

In his new position as general manager, Zanik has been the force behind the trades that have changed the Jazz’s roster.

Zanik told guest hosts Kirk Jowers and Ben Wilson on the Dave and Dujanovic Show that’s because the fans deserve a competitive team — something he says owner Gail Miller has allowed and expected them to do.

“[The fans] deserve for us to be able to build a competitive team and hopefully, with the things that we can predict and a little luck along the way… we have a lot of work to do, but … we’re ready to make our mark,” Zanik said.

The Jazz have had an incredibly busy off-season, bringing veteran point guard Mike Conley to Utah from the Memphis Grizzlies in a trade, as well as Bojan Bogdanovic, Ed Davis, Jeff Green and Emmanuel Mudiay in free agency.

Zanik says those trades came after the team felt that it was time for a change and that they may have reached a ceiling with the current group.

“Getting to know what our team has been like over the last three years, which is highly competitive, playoff competitive, high character, we also knew that we’d probably reached a little bit of a ceiling with the current group,” he said.

That, along with several opportunities Zanik said presented themselves this post-season, led to the changes in the roster, changes that might take a while for the team to adjust to but that other players are looking forward to.

“We have a great city great fans, great ownership support.

“We have a code and a playing style that players enjoy playing. Coach Snyder’s very popular around the league as far as the way in racks and connects with players and try to maximize their ability. So all of those things come in a very nice package. And so when we had some opportunities this summer, frankly, it was an easy sell. And it’s been an easy sell for the last three or four years as well,” Zanik told KSL on Tuesday.

That’s one of the things that Georges Niang said he was excited about when he heard he was getting picked up by the Jazz.

“The Jazz has a good reputation of player development around the whole league. And everybody knows that.

“[This] city is amazing, you know, the fan support that we get is just, it’s incredible. I mean, we’re the only show in town and people make that clear. They appreciate our efforts and appreciate the work that we put in and be that the players that we are. I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else,”  Niang said.

You can hear the rest of the conversation with Zanik and Niang on the Dave and Dujanovic podcast below.

Dave & Dujanovic can be heard weekdays from 9 a.m. to noon on KSL NewsRadio. Users can find the show on the KSL NewsRadio website and app, as well as Apple Podcasts and Google Play.

Listen on Google Play Music

Utah Jazz

Photo of new tags installed by Digital Seat Media for Utah Jazz home games...
Chandler Holt

Utah Jazz home games receive a big upgrade just before the playoffs

The Utah Jazz has partnered with Digital Seat Media to install tags that fans can scan to access seating maps, food ordering, and more.
6 months ago
(The Vivint Arena, with a countdown to the 2023 NBA All-Star Game.  Photo: Paul Nelson, March 23, 2...
Paul Nelson

NBA watching Utah and the proposed transgender student sports ban

If a transgender sports ban is upheld by the Utah legislature, it's possible the 2023 NBA All-Star game could be pulled out of Salt Lake City.
6 months ago
The Utah Jazz Foundation made a donation to Airbnb.org to fund 32,200 nights of stay for the refuge...
Mark Jones

Utah Jazz Foundation will fund 32,200 nights of housing for refugees

The Utah Jazz Foundation made a donation to AirBnB.org to fund 32,200 nights of housing for refugees fleeing Ukraine.
7 months ago
The Ukrainian national anthem will be played before tonight's Jazz game....
Samantha Herrera

Local violinist to perform Ukrainian national anthem at tonight’s Jazz game

The Ukrainian national anthem will be performed by a local violinist before tonight's Jazz game. The NBA usually only plays the U.S. or Canadian anthems.
7 months ago
Jordon Clarkson...
Mark Jones

Jazz guard Jordan Clarkson says fan ‘crossed a line,’ fan later removed

Clarkson's teammates and security prevented an escalation. Later, Jordan Clarkson hit a pair of free throws to seal a Jazz victory.
9 months ago
Izzy life celebrated...
Karilyn Frazier

Izzy Tichenor’s life celebrated, Utah Jazz star covers costs

Isabella "Izzy" Faith Tichenor's life was celebrated Saturday morning in Riverton.
11 months ago

Sponsored Articles

Prescription opioid...
Know Your Script

Prescription opioid misuse | How to protect your family from the opioid epidemic

Studies have shown that prescription opioid misuse has increased since COVID-19. So what do you need to know about these opioids?

Tax Tuesday: The Most Common Mistakes People Make When Filing Their Taxes

Fortunately, for most average earners, they will not end up owing overpayments received for the Child Tax Credit in 2021.

Tax Tuesday: How will last year’s child tax credits affect you?

Fortunately, for most average earners, they will not end up owing overpayments received for the Child Tax Credit in 2021.

Tax Tuesday: Key Information Before the Filing Deadline

Businesses can receive a credit of up to $5,000 per employee in 2020 and up to $21,000 per employee in 2021.
national heart month...
Intermountain Healthcare

National Heart Month: 5 Lifestyle Changes to Make Today to Keep You Heart Healthy

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women. One person dies every 36 seconds in the United States from cardiovascular disease
Joseph Smith Memorial Building...
Temple Square

The Joseph Smith Memorial Building is an icon of Salt Lake City | Why hosting an event at this beautiful location will make you a hero this year

Here's why hosting an event at the iconic Joseph Smith Memorial Building in downtown Salt Lake City will make you a hero this year.
New Jazz GM says fans deserve competitive team