The Utah Jazz were fortunate enough to receive two lottery picks in the 2011 NBA Draft. With the second of those two picks, they selected Alec Burks from the University of Colorado.
Burks is possibly the best shooting guard prospect to come out of the 2011 draft. He is a dynamic scorer with plenty of energy. What type of role will he be fulfilling in Utah in his rookie season?
Most likely, he will play an important role coming off the bench for the Jazz, at least to start out the season. Burks is one of those guys that can create his own baskets. He has the ability to drive to the hoop with what seems like little effort and finish at the rim. He was one of the best at doing this in college. It will be more difficult in the NBA, but the type of game Burks plays usually translates well from college to the NBA. Having a guy like this come off the bench is a benefit to any team.
Although he may start off as a sixth or seventh man off the bench, don't be surprised to see Burks work his way into a starting role later on in the season. The Jazz are weak at the shooting guard position. With an aging Raja Bell and an inconsistent C.J. Miles, Burks could wind up being a starter sooner than we think. A guy with the ability to take the ball inside and score is a valuable one to have on your roster. The Jazz will most likely utilize him off the bench at first, and if he proves he can perform, he will become a starter.
Part of Burks' role will to provide scoring from the wing position. He will need to be able to score when the Jazz need him to. This is especially true coming off the bench. He may be the first option as a scorer on that second unit. It is important for Burks to find a more consistent shot as well. He is great at driving to the hoop, but he can make some improvements on his jump shot. If he can do this, he will be a force to reckon with as an NBA player.
It may take Burks a little time to develop, but he will be a good NBA player as that shot is improved.