NBA Trade Rumors: Utah Jazz Must Not Trade Away Young Alec Burks

Josh SchochAnalyst IIINovember 23, 2012

LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 17:  Alec Burks #10 of the Utah Jazz is defended by Ryan Hollins #15 of the Los Angeles Clippers during the second half of a preseason game at Staples Center on October 17, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. The Clippers defeated the Jazz 96-94. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Jeff Gross/Getty Images

Among the early NBA trade rumors is the notion that the Utah Jazz are thinking about sending second-year guard Alec Burks away. Wait, what?

Yep, according to Sam Amico of FOX Sports the Jazz are thinking about trading away the team's first round pick from 2011 before even giving him a chance in the league.


Word around NBA is Jazz G Alec Burks is available. Burks, the 12th overall draft pick in 2011, has played in just 5 of Jazz's 10 games.

— Sam Amico (@SamAmicoFSO) November 17, 2012


The Jazz would be making a horrible mistake by dealing the 21-year-old before even giving him a chance to shine for the team.

After drafting him with the No. 12 pick in the 2011 NBA draft, the Jazz have failed to give the young prospect out of Colorado a fair shot in the NBA.

In his rookie season he was stuck behind Raja Bell for most of the year. He didn't grow much because he was just 20 years old and forced to share time with Bell. By not putting confidence in him to succeed, Utah essentially stunted the growth of one of its best young players.

At 6'6" and 205 pounds, Burks has the body of an NBA player. He has the length and athleticism to excel as a shooting guard, and his physical attributes are what allowed him to be drafted after just two seasons in college.

Burks proved that he can score by going for 20.5 points per game in his sophomore season, in addition to his 6.5 rebounds and 2.9 assists. Even in the NBA he is averaging 6.6 points per game in just 15.2 minutes, which is equivalent to 20.8 points per 48 minutes.

If Burks were given the chance to start for the Jazz we could see his numbers explode, but the team needs to first give him a chance to prove that he is capable of becoming a scoring machine.

With Raja Bell not playing nearly as much this season, you'd think that the Jazz would finally let Burks start, or at the very least play more minutes per game. Instead, he has had his playing time cut to just 7.8 minutes per game at the hands of Gordon Hayward, Marvin Williams and Randy Foye. seemed to have high expectations for Burks, saying that the best case scenario for the Colorado star would be if he excelled like Brandon Roy did. It may seem silly to look back at the expectations of a player when they were drafted, but you have to keep in mind that this is just his second year in the league.

Burks still has the potential to emerge as a star if given the chance. The Jazz clearly saw that when they drafted him with a lottery pick, but the team seems set on wasting his talents.

The team spent an early pick on this guy, and it would be foolish to trade him before even giving him a chance. The Jazz must not trade Burks at this point, and instead give him a opportunity to flourish.

If he fails to improve when given a bigger role for at least one season, then the team might consider dealing him, but trading him now would essentially be the equivalent of trading away Enes Kanter before giving him a shot as well.