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Who's the ideal #1?


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2019 Award Winner
2022 Award Winner
I think JC could continue in the #2 role. Still think Rui would fit quite well on the roster to round it out, increased size and athleticism. After that would try to fill PG spot through the draft this year as well as a younger SF/PF that can grow within the system

Jc is a fine #2 option on a team like this that is fighting to be in the play in, but he's not a #2 option on a contender.

Step-Back Hook

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I’ll get slammed for this but I don’t view Markkanen as a #1, allstar caliber… yes.

That's quite obvious at this point of his development. We saw it against Bucks and Nets he is not yet at the level of #1 of contending team. It has been cleear this far he needs more on-ball skills to be the real #1. Can be #2 or part of a tandem. Even as of now he might even become the one that take most shots in a real good team but not being the 1st ption on-ball closer in the clutch before/if he takes more leaps in development.


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I’ll get slammed for this but I don’t view Markkanen as a #1, allstar caliber… yes.
How often does a player stall in development after his break out year, and how often they continue to progress? Id guess latter is way more common.

Views change.. including your view about him this year. Dont make final calls too early.


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I love Lauri but, put me in the camp that thinks hes is a #2
If you wanna win a championship you have to have someone in the top 3
Lauri is not that guy


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2020-21 Award Winner
I absolutely believe Lauri could be the #1 option on a championship team.
Could be, absolutely. Isn't yet, but could be. I think he needs a little more aggression in demanding the ball and commanding the game to be that guy. Right now he takes what comes to him, so we've seen plenty of games where he had 20+ points by the start of the 4th quarter and then we see the JC show nearly the entire rest of the way. For Lauri to be the real #1 he needs to be the guy demanding the ball at the end and making the plays, not just being another option if Clarkson decides to find him.

To be fair part of this is on the coaches and the rest of the team for not purposely looking for him. But LeBron never waited for everyone else to include him in the plays, nor did any other #1 on championship teams. Giannis, Steph, Kawhi, KD, etc. were all the clear #1 option on their respective teams and the team just deferred to them. They didn't wait to be set up, they took the ball and took over the game. Almost always by design from the coaching staff as well, and with a clear understanding of this from the rest of the team. But they demanded it, vocally yes, but through their play as much as anything else.
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The last second hero balling is so overblown. It rarely happens, it's even rarer for it to be effective.

Could Lauri go off for 40 in the finals and score in the 25-30s in all the games. Absolutely I can see it. Could he score possession after possession in Kobe-type isolation. No, not right now, and doubt it will happen even with him developing.

But all you have to do is look at actual finals games. It wasn't just Giannis vs. Booker in an iso contest. Or Curry vs. Tatum. It was just as much Middleton, Holiday and even Connaughton taking shots in the final minutes of games. And CP3, Ayton and Bridges making free throws. Smart, Brown and Horford; Wiggins and even Draymond.

It's much more probable that tight playoff games come down to making FTs in clutch spots rather than that one possession with the shot clock off and trailing by 1. And there aren't a lot of #1 guys I'd rather have at the line in that situation ahead of Lauri.


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My problem with the Lauri-as-a-#1 idea is this:

Lauri is very likely no better as a #1 than Donovan was (Donovan has a lot longer track record of performing at that level on much better teams). Yet almost everyone here concluded Donovan wasn't good enough in that role to make us a true contender.

I don't doubt that Lauri can be a #1 for a playoff team. But for a real championship contender ... I have my doubts.

I think the Jazz are definitely best served to assume that Laurie can be a great #2 and keep searching for a #1. If he turns into a #1 anyway, that's just icing on the cake.