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The New York Knicks (tied for third in the Eastern Conference as I’m writing this) have been playing incredible basketball, and they already were one of the teams that made a big move prior to the trade deadline when they acquired OG Anunoby from the Toronto Raptors.
But on Thursday, they made a big swing and landed former Jazzmen Bojan Bogdanovic and Alec Burks from the Detroit Pistons, while honestly not giving up too much in the deal. The Knicks intend to contend for a title, and they are positioned very well in the East.
So while the Knicks look like big winners at the deadline, it’s Bogdanovic and Burks that are the biggest winners of the day.
Prior to last season, when Bogdanovic was traded to Detroit from Utah, he’d been to the playoffs seven of the eight seasons he’d been in the NBA. Then he was shipped to a Pistons team that turned in just 17 wins last year.
This year, while injured, he watched as the Pistons went on the worst losing streak in NBA history. On Thursday night the Pistons earned just their eighth win of the season. They are horrible. And watching the horror show alongside Bogdanovic, was Burks, another beloved former Jazzman.
Bogdanovic (34) and Burks (32) are not spring chickens in the NBA. The window for being on a contending team that can fight for a title is quickly closing and both players are incredibly deserving.
While I did not cover Burks while he was with the Jazz, I do know that he was beloved by the fans and that they have rooted for his success since departing from Utah. I did cover Bogdanovic’s run with the Jazz, and not only was he one of the coolest and realest players I’ve ever covered, he is one of the toughest who is absolutely dedicated to winning.
There’s obviously no guarantee that the Knicks will succeed in their quest for a championship, but I’m sure that Jazz fans will agree that if anyone deserves the chance to be fighting at Madison Square Garden and given the spotlight on a winning team, it’s these two former Jazzmen.
New with the Jazz
Quote of the week
“I didn’t know that. That makes me feel better than I did five minutes ago.” — Jazz coach Will Hardy on hearing that his team is No. 1 in clutch scoring.
From the archives
- The two main reasons the Jazz traded Fontecchio, Olynyk and Agbaji (Deseret News)
- Expect for Jazz games to be uncomfortable and maybe a little ugly (Deseret News)
- Hardy working to ‘free players’ brains up a little bit’ to abandon plans and react (KSL.com)
- Lauri Markkanen to participate in 3-point contest at All-Star weekend (KSL.com)
Around the league
- Knicks’ OG Anunoby undergoes surgery on elbow.
- Dennis Schroder and Thad Young dealt to Brooklyn Nets from Toronto Raptors.
- Philadelphia 76ers land Buddy Hield from Pacers and Cam Payne from Bucks.
- Dallas Mavericks acquire Daniel Gafford from Wizards and P.J. Washington from Hornets.
- Feb. 12 | 7 p.m. | Utah Jazz vs. Golden State Warriors | KJZZ
- Feb. 14 | 7 p.m. | Utah Jazz vs. Los Angeles Lakers | KJZZ
- Feb. 15 | 7 p.m. | Utah Jazz vs. Golden State Warriors | KJZZ
All times MST.