Carlos Boozer Opts out According to Utah Radio Station

Diana AllenCorrespondent IApril 29, 2009

SALT LAKE CITY - APRIL 25:  Carlos Boozer #5 of the Utah Jazz shoots in Game Four of the Western Conference Quarterfinals against the Los Angeles Lakers during the 2009 NBA Playoffs at Energy Solutions Arena on April 25, 2009 in Salt Lake City, Utah.  The Lakers won 108-94.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

According to 1320 KFAN, the official radio station of the Utah Jazz, Carlos Boozer will opt out of his contract but plans to stay with the Jazz.

Boozer said he is a cornerstone of this team, along with Deron Williams, and that he brought this team back into the playoffs and back into prominence.

As a Jazz fan, I hope he is as trustworthy with Utah as he was with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

During the locker room clean-out for the Jazz, Boozer said he performed well in the playoffs.

Really Boozer? In Game Three, yes, you played well. But please, tell the Jazz fans, what other game did you impact? Where were you in Game Five, the elimination game?

He scored 10 points on 3-for-7 shooting. What cornerstone of a franchise takes seven shots in an elimination game?

Here are Boozer's numbers over the last three years in elimination games:

2007 vs. San Antonio Spurs—9 PTS, 3-for-10 FG
2008 vs. Los Angeles Lakers—12 PTS, 5-for-16 FG
2009 vs. Los Angeles Lakers—10 PTS, 3-for-8 FG

Those are hardly max-money, cornerstone-quality performances. If you were the Jazz, would you give Boozer more money for that?

Due to injury (real or imagined), his matador defense, and his lackluster playoff performance, Boozer does not deserve a raise, and Utah doesn't deserve a player like him.

Compare Boozer to his backup, Paul Millsap.

Millsap was quoted in the Salt Lake Tribune, saying:

"I want to say [coming off the bench] wasn't difficult," Millsap said, "but at times, never knowing what was going to happen kind of weighs on you, never knowing really how many minutes you're going to play, when you're going to go into the game, when you're going to come out."

Whether he winds up as a starter or a reserve next season, Millsap said he was "going to continue to be humble and accept my role."

Millsap is in line for a significant raise from the $797,581 he made this season, though the Jazz can match any offer from another team.

"I'll fit in anywhere, seeing how hard I work and what I bring to the table," Millsap said. "I feel like if I go wherever I go, I'm going to give it my all."

Why would you not sign Millsap, who is humble, a hard worker, and willing to do whatever he needs to for the good of the team?

He is a much better option than Boozer, who announced while he was injured that he would opt out and "get his raise no matter what." When asked if he would accept a backup role after coach Jerry Sloan thought about bringing Boozer off the bench, he said "I am a starter, period."

Send Boozer to Detroit. According to Pace Mannion, a former Jazz player and current Jazz TV commentator, there are rumors in the Jazz locker room that Boozer already has a deal, or is close to having a deal, with the Pistons.

The Utah Jazz and their fans don't deserve what Boozer brings to the table, cornerstone player or not.



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