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Derrick Favors prefers to remain with Jazz

Derrick Favors

Since he was drafted with the third overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft, Utah Jazz forward Derrick Favors has had a somewhat tumultuous career. Favors was initially drafted by the Brooklyn Nets (then still under the moniker of the New Jersey Nets), but he was traded to Utah midway through his rookie season in a deal that sent Deron Williams to the Nets.

And in Utah, Favors has seen a number of highs and lows. He broke out in his fourth year, averaging 13.3 points and 8.7 rebounds while establishing himself as an excellent rim protector with 1.5 blocks per game.

Over the next two years, Favors’ scoring average jumped to over 16 points per game, and he seemed to finally be headed for the two-way stardom that he had promised as a prospect out of Georgia Tech.

But injuries and a decline in efficiency would lead to Favors starting in just 39 of the 50 games he appeared in during the 2016-17 season, and he averaged just under 24 minutes per contest. Although he returned fully healthy for the 2017-18 season, he has seen a decrease in scoring average and minutes.

However, those numbers alone do not tell the whole story for Favors. The 27-year-old has posted two consecutive seasons shooting above 56 percent from the field. And according to NBA.com, his 94.9 defensive rating was the best of his career.

Favors, who has a team option for next season, told Eric Walden of The Salt Lake Tribune that he wants to stay in Utah:

“I have a team option; I need that option picked up! I would prefer to come back here,” he said. “The grass is not always greener on the other side. … I’m happy in the situation that I’m in, in the position that I’m in — I think it’s good for me and the organization.”

As Walden notes, however, Favors’ salary comes off Utah’s books if they waive him before July 6, which could give the Jazz the cap space to sign a max-level free agent.