Player: PG Ronnie Price
Regular Season Stats:
The recap is below.
The season recap effort continues, this time with the guy that ended up being the back-up PG (after spending most of the first 51 games of the season as the 3rd stringer). The other recaps will be linked to at the end of the post as they are put up.
A quick look at SLC Dunk’s.
Go-To Moves… aka, the good(s) of the regular season.
End of quarter treys.
Price was all but guaranteed to be on the court at the end of the first quarter (after he took the back-up job away from Jason Hart). And that meant that when the quarter was drawing to a close and the Jazz had the ball, you’d see the Jazz run all the time they could off of the clock before starting a play (normally about 9 seconds left on the clock). Unlike Hart, who tended to miss the (rushed & ugly) shots he took (he rarely ever passed), Price showed a willingness to pass. More importantly though, there were quite a few times where he’d take the last shot… and drain it. And quite a few times, it was a long bomb. If nothing else, it got the crowd going as the break began. Plus, 3 points are always good.
Remember last year, how the speedster on the team was Dee Brown? Remember how he’d fly down the court and blow the lay-up at the end. Yeah… that’s not Price. Flying down the court, he can do. But he’s also able to finish with a strong jam… another thing that got the crowd going. Just something about Ronnie. And unlike Brown, he seems likely to stick around for next year (and beyond?). He was able to run up and down the court though, and that really showed up in one play (in particular) in the playoffs.
Shut Your Eyes… aka, the bad(s) of the regular season.
Early Season DNPs.
Jason Hart struggled from the get-go. Yet he remained the back-up for 51 games (save the games missed due to injury). During that time, Price got 21 DNP-CDs. I don’t know how much it would’ve helped the team, but you’d think that 21 DNP-CDs for Price probably hurt the team in some way (because Hart was getting all the minutes). Yeah, must’ve been a disappointing start for Price. It definitely was for the fans.
The Fisher Effect.
After the horrible failure of Jerry Sloan’s attempt to use Derek Fisher as a shooting guard, it came as a surprise to no one when he went back to the 6’2 SG, this time with Price coming off of the bench. J-Slo’s dislike of CJ, Almond & Giricek caused this, as Price became the back-up 2-guard behind Brewer. This ended when J-Slo realized that he could play KoKo & No Knees at the same time, moving from the 2 PG rotation to the 2 SF rotation… neither of which is ideal. But he just doesn’t get that. Anyhow, while this wasn’t pretty, it was still reality. Price is a fine back-up PG. But a back-up SG? Not so much. Nothing against Price, but his size makes it just a little hard for him to stick with the taller 2-guards.
Playoff Calling Card… aka, what to recall about the playoffs.
Your Utah Jazz Play of the Playoffs
Need I say more? Luke Walton… meet Ronnie Price.
The 2nd most memorable play (arguably) for the Jazz in these playoffs. Price attacks the rim, and is attacked by Ronny Turiaf. After the whistle. Hello Turiaf’s arm. Hello floor. Hello blood. Lots of it. Of course, soon after comes Hello Luke Walton (see above).
In The Future… aka, what awaits this off-season.
He’s under contract for next season already, and will probably be battling with Jason Hart to be the back-up again (save a trade or buy-out of Hart). But after that, he’s a free agent. The question is… do you trust him as your back-up? And does he want to remain here, or can he get more time somewhere else? If the plan is to let him go (or if he expresses an interest in leaving), maybe the Jazz would be best served by getting a PG in the draft this year (or signing Kevin Kruger, which is still my preference) and letting him observe for 1 year. I like Price though… I’d love to see him stick around. Of course, I said the same thing about Dee Brown after last season.
Granted, it was Dee’s rookie year. He probably would have grown a bit with another year under his belt. But I think a lot of people forgot about Brown when Price took over. He’s definitely an upgrade over Brown and definitely contributed to some Jazz wins.