Editor’s note: First in a three-part series examining what players the Utah Jazz might select in the 2024 NBA draft.

The Utah Jazz head into the 2024 NBA Draft with two first-round picks — No. 10 and No. 29 — and one second-round pick — No. 32. That doesn’t mean the Jazz are going to make all three selections.

By the time the Jazz are on the clock on draft night, they will have exhausted all options when it comes to dealing away picks, packaging them in a larger deal, trading to move up or down in the draft or even a mixture of all of the above.

But in the event a deal doesn’t materialize that the Jazz feel compelled to sign off on, the first choice they’ll have to make it who to draft with the 10th overall pick.

With the combined knowledge of what the Jazz like, who they’ve had in for workouts, what the team needs and the time I’ve spent learning about the different prospects, here are five players I think the Jazz should target with the No. 10 pick.

Cody Williams | Colorado | freshman | 6′6.5″

I think there is a really good chance Cody Williams is already off the board by the time the Jazz are set to make the No. 10 pick, but if he is still on the board, he is exactly the type of player the Jazz should take.

The Jazz should be looking at taking the best available talent, regardless of position when they make their picks. That’s the first priority.

Now, that’s usually how teams draft anyway, but since the Jazz are still pretty far out from being a legitimate contender, they need talent that not only could be serviceable long term, but could be the kind of player who will play well on the trade market.

After those boxes are checked, then the Jazz should start to consider positional need. Well, Williams fits the bill across the board.

He’s smart with the ball in his hands, he knows how to attack a closeout and make defense pay with quick decisions, he can operate as a secondary playmaker and knows how to run a pick-and-roll while also being a great finisher around the rim.

While a lot of people are concerned about his shot and that he didn’t shoot the ball at volume in his one season at Colorado, there’s plenty of reason to believe a good foundation will lead to even more results at the next level.

Williams shot 41.5% from 3-point range, albeit at just 1.7 attempts per game, but that shows that he hasn’t needed to get a lot of shots up to be efficient.

Additionally, what those in the know have seen from Williams throughout the years (high school and college) leads them to believe that his shot is going to continue to come along and he’ll be fine from that department once his role changes in the NBA and puts him on the perimeter a little more. He has good mechanics and form.

Defensively he needs to be stronger, but his size and length (7′1″ wingspan) give him a great base to work with to be a versatile and switchy defender in the NBA.

He is really smart and has good instincts, which is what makes him the ideal two-way prospect who could be valued across the league.

It does seem that there are moments when effort is a little questionable from Williams. That can often be a byproduct of the college game where there is a bit more stagnation through long possessions. At the NBA level, he’ll need to prove himself by staying active and be willing to do dirty work consistently.

Dalton Knecht | Tennessee | senior | 6′5.25″

I completely reject the idea that a senior in college is “old,” even when being compared to some of the one-and-done prospects. More often than not, players continue developing their game and are completely different by 25 than they were when they were drafted, no matter how old they were.

Lauri Markkanen was a great player at a young age when he was drafted and an even better and completely different player by 25.

If anything, the more seasoned college players are usually more ready for the NBA than the underclassmen that transition to the pros, so there’s no reason to believe that 23 year-old Dalton Knecht can’t continue to improve and contribute in a positive way for an NBA team.

Also, Knecht was not someone who garnered a lot of attention out of high school, and he had to work his way into a Division I rotation by grinding out at junior college before moving on to Northern Colorado and later transferring to Tennessee.

Knecht improved his skillset and production every step of the way and made necessary tweaks to his game every year. He has proven the ability to adapt while growing.

His greatest strength is his offense, where he is smart, savvy, knows when to get off the ball and knows when his shot is there, even in tight windows.

He shot 39.7% from 3 on 6.5 attempts per game at Tennessee and did so in a variety of ways (catch-and-shoot, off the dribble, step-back), but he’s also good operating in space and using his athleticism against a defense. He’s a pure scorer who can probably contribute right away.

Defensively, he has not proven himself and he was often targeted in college. I’ve heard from a number of scouts and executives that they believe Knecht can show improvement in that area, which he will absolutely need to do if he’s going to stay on the floor in the NBA.

Jared McCain | Duke | freshman | 6′2″

I know the Jazz don’t necessarily need guards right now, but you have to remember that the roster they have today is not the roster that they will have when it’s time to make a playoff run.

Also, don’t forget that the Jazz need to make sure the players they pick in this draft need to be valuable to other teams as well, just in case.

With all of that aside, McCain seems like the most pure point guard in this draft. He’s a change speed, move the ball, control the pace of a pick-and-roll, make the right decision type of player who also has a ton of pride on the defensive end.

He has a great shot (41.4% from 3), is a smart passer and knows how to run an offense.

He’s not a downhill scorer ala Colin Sexton. He doesn’t do a great job of breaking down defenders as an isolation player, but he does know how to move within a system as a creator in order to make space and plays.

Devin Carter | Providence | junior | 6′2.25″

While McCain feels like the most well-rounded and pure point guard in this class, Reed Sheppard and Devin Carter are the best shooting guards.

I doubt very seriously that Sheppard will drop below the top five, but Carter could make it to 10.

Carter is every coach’s dream when it comes to an effort perimeter defender — low stance, quick feet, crafty hands, a nose for the ball and a never-ending motor.

He also is smart with what happens after a shot, whether that be relocating for an outlet or knowing when to crash in to help on the boards. He’s stronger than he looks, which makes him effective in those situations.

Offensively, he knows how to move without the ball in his hands and he is great at timing cuts and screens, even as a smaller player. He’s a great finisher and isn’t scared of contact at the rim and has a good first step.

As a shooter, there are some concerns. Though he shot 37.7% in his final season at Providence, it wasn’t on high volume and was a huge leap from his sub-30% shooting the previous two years.

His form is not great and he has a really low release point, which is a little concerning considering how much bigger and faster the defenders will be in the NBA.

That being said, Carter really impressed teams at the combine and through the predraft process, so much so that he seems to be a lock to be a lottery pick.

Tidjane Salaun | Cholet, France | 6′8.75″

There is a lot to like about Tidjane Salaun, and the upside when looking at his body and skillset is incredible. But this is a project player. He is going to need at least a couple of years to develop into what everyone is hoping he will be.

He’s certainly needs time to develop into an adult’s body, put on weight and get used to playing against NBA-sized players, and he also is really raw in a lot of areas — dribbling, creating, passing, footwork, rebounding.

If you’re not scared off by those things, then the natural talent of this 18-year-old is worth taking a shot on.

Speaking of shots, he only recently started shooting from deep and shooting well, moving into plus-30% territory. He has a great high release and good form, which makes many think his recent shooting can be trusted.


But what really has scouts and executives interested in Salaun is his body and instincts. He has huge, massive hands, a 7′1.5″ wingspan and is a great help defender.

He is a crafty lob threat and is crazy athletic despite being so slight and skinny. You can tell that once he fills out, he’ll be a freight train when he’s running.

He’s so smart when he’s playing defense off the ball and never has his hands down. He’s also really fast with huge strides, making him an immediate transition threat.

Salaun is a player with huge potential, which makes him really interesting to NBA decision makers, but he is also a risk who will need time to develop.

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