|Knight happy to have better shot at playoffs|
|Written by Admin|
|Thursday, 31 July 2008 22:45|
That job undisputedly belongs to Deron Williams. The Jazz were looking for a veteran who could push and mentor their young leader and liked the deal that brought Knight to Utah.
Knight, who met with reporters on Thursday, sounded pretty happy about it too.
He's made the playoffs just twice in 11 NBA seasons. Utah is his ninth team, and he said he is happy to make another move for a chance at the postseason.
``This has always been one of the tougher teams to play against in my career. Now to be on the other side of that and cause havoc for everybody else is definitely a positive for me,'' Knight said. ``They expect me to be quick and run their team. That's what I've been able to do throughout my career.''
The Jazz traded Jason Hart to the Los Angeles Clippers for Knight. Hart spent just one season in Utah, starting out as Williams' backup and falling to No. 3 behind Williams and Ronnie Price midway through the season.
Jazz general manager Kevin O'Connor noted Knight's experience and career assist-to-turnover ratio of 6.6-to-1.9. Although Knight is only 5-foot-10, he has been in the NBA since Cleveland took him No. 16 overall in the 1997 draft.
Knight made the playoffs with the Cavaliers his rookie year, but didn't reach the postseason again until he was with Milwaukee from 2003-04. He has nine career playoff games, fewer than the Jazz have played in either of the last two years.
The Jazz made it to the second round this season and were in the Western Conference finals the year before.
``At this point in my career, the last couple of years I've been wanting to get with a winning organization,'' said Knight, who was part of the Charlotte Bobcats expansion team and spent three years there before joining the Clippers as a free agent.
``This organization has been that way over the years.''
Knight and Utah forward Matt Harpring were teammates briefly in Cleveland at the start of the 2000-01 season. Harpring, who turned 32 at the end of May, passes over the dubious title of Utah's oldest player to Knight, who will be 33 in November.
Knight said he knows that he won't be competing with Williams for the starting job. Williams, who just finished his third season, signed a four-year contract extension in July and is spending the next few weeks in China with the U.S. national team at the Olympics.
``I know that this is Deron Williams' team. There is no question about that,'' Knight said. ``He has worked to get himself in that position and he is a great player in this league.''