The Utah Jazz‘s 2012-2013 season ended a little earlier than expected when they were eliminated from playoff contention in their final game, but despite not qualifying for postseason the Jazz have a lot to be excited about. One of those players is former 2010 third overall pick power forward Derrick Favors.
The Jazz acquired Favors halfway through his rookie season in the trade that sent Deron Williams to the then Brooklyn Nets, with hopes that Favors could eventually develop into a dominant post player. Although just 19 at the time, Favors had the 6’10″, 240-pound frame that is ideal for a power forward in today’s NBA.
Favors was about as solid as you could expect a rookie playing less than 20 minutes per game could be, averaging 6.8 points and 5.3 rebounds on the season, including 22 games with the Jazz. Last year saw a slight improvement in production, with Favors putting up 8.8 points, 6.5 rebounds for Utah.
The 2012-2013 season was Favors best to date, as he reached career highs in scoring (9.4), rebounding (7.1) and blocked shots (1.7 per game) while playing 23.2 minutes per night. Favors even averaged a double-double in the eight games he started on the season.
A starting role in Favors for the taking next season, with both Paul Millsap and Al Jefferson slotted to hit free agency and one — if not both — expected to be elsewhere. Favors has shown improvement in each season that should give the Jazz confidence that he can handle the role full time, and he’ll be just 22 when the season begins.
Favors will need to have a big year next season in order to secure a big time contract extension from the Jazz, which he will be eligible for next summer. He has the tools and ability, and now will also have the opportunity to prove his worth.