After getting swept in the first round by the San Antonio Spurs, the Utah Jazz must make some adjustments if they want to reach the second round next year. Devin Harris did not have a strong season for the Jazz last year, so Utah should consider upgrading at point guard. One player they should consider is Jose Calderon.
Jose Calderon has been with the Toronto Raptors his entire career. But with Toronto focusing on defense with new coach Dwane Casey, Calderon is expendable. While not great defensively, Calderon is great at distributing the ball (8.8 assists per game last season) and is a good all-around shooter.
The Jazz have a $10.9 million trade exception from the Mehmet Okur trade that expires in December. Calderon makes just over $10.5 million next season, so the deal works perfectly for both sides. The Jazz will get the point guard they need to get past the first round of the playoffs, and Toronto has a trade exception they can use on a small forward.
While Jazz fans may be concerned about adding another salary, Paul Millsap, Al Jefferson and Devin Harris all have expiring contracts next year, making them attractive pieces in the trade market. Enes Kanter and Derrick Favors will continue to improve, making one of their high-earning big men expendable. Teams are always looking for a backup point guard, so Harris will not be a struggle to trade either.
Calderon will make the Utah Jazz a better team. He is a great shooter and, more importantly, will elevate the play of other players on the team. The Jazz must use their trade exception this offseason, and it would be a mistake if it wasn’t used on Jose Calderon.