Monday, February 23, 2009

Koufos and Fesenko likely to play in NBDL

With Carlos Boozer likely back from arthroscopic knee surgery, the Jazz will have 15 healthy players — including three who'll be wearing street clothes behind the bench for tonight's game against Atlanta. That in mind, Jazz coach Jerry Sloan said Sunday he'd consider soon sending center Kyrylo Fesenko and/or rookie big man Kosta Koufos to the Utah Flash, their Orem-based NBA Development League affiliate.

"We've got to see where (Boozer) is," Sloan said. "But, you know, these young guys have got to improve. They can't improve sitting there on the bench all the time — and our practices, they're not very tough practices right now."

Guard Morris Almond, whose contract option for next season has not been picked up by the Jazz, also is a candidate for the Flash. That parent club can't assign more than two of its players to the D-League at the same time, though.

Sloan dodged when asked if Fesenko or Koufos is currently ahead of the other on his depth chart. "I think both of them has got a lot to learn," he said. "I think they both can play, if they work at it.

"Kosta, he's had a chance to get some minutes he probably wouldn't have gotten if it weren't for (the Jazz injury woes," Sloan added. "But, still, the recognition and different things that come up in a game — where am I supposed to be on this, what am I supposed to do, how do we play on a pick-and-roll — (are lacking)."

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