Derrick Favors is not being shopped around the league by the Jazz despite the team’s reported interest in free agent Paul Millsap, a source told Aaron Falk of the Salt Lake Tribune. A source had told Jody Genessy of the Deseret News earlier this week that Favors might be traded to make room for Millsap. While the Jazz are likely to gauge Millsap’s interested in returning to Utah, they like the defensive pairing of Favors and Rudy Gobert along the interior, Falk continues. That duo had a defensive rating of 92.5 points allowed per 100 possessions, fourth best in the NBA, over the last 29 games when the Jazz went 19-10, Falk notes. Favors also has a team-friendly contract averaging $11.6MM over the next three seasons, Falk adds.
In other news around the Northwest Division:
- Utah will make a $1,045,059 qualifying offer to Joe Ingles, giving the Jazz the right to match all offers for the one-year veteran in free agency this summer, reports Tony Jones of The Salt Lake Tribune (Twitter links). That’s no surprise, since Tribune scribe Gordon Monson had identified mutual interest this spring between the Jazz and the Australian swingman. Utah is still planning to re-sign him, Jones adds.
- The Jazz selected Trey Lyles with their first-round pick over his Kentucky teammate Devin Booker because of his playmaking ability and defensive versatility, according to Tony Jones of the Salt Lake Tribune. Lyles can not only back up Favors, he can slide over to small forward and even center on occasion, Jones continues. Booker would have come onto the team as the third shooting guard with no apparent path to playing time, Jones adds.
- The Nuggets let two trade exceptions expire unused Friday — one worth $1.75MM for Anthony Randolph, who went out in the trade that brought in Jusuf Nurkic and Gary Harris, and the other worth $1,422,720 that was a vestige of last summer’s Evan Fournier/Arron Afflalo trade.
- Former NBA point guard Sergio Rodriguez confirmed to The Oregonian’s Jason Quick that he is thinking about returning to the NBA and will gauge the market after free agency begins Wednesday. He called the buyout in his contract with Real Madrid of Spain, worth a reported 2 million euros that comes to almost $2.234MM at today’s exchange rate, a reasonable one, Quick adds. Conflicting reports of late had painted different pictures about whether Rodriguez was considering the NBA, and another report identified the Nuggets as one of three NBA teams with interest.