After trading away All-Stars Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell, the Utah Jazz have entered what looks to be a full-scale rebuilding process.
Having minimal depth in their frontcourt and not much overall experience at the center position, the Jazz have gone out and signed a veteran center with a ton of experience in Cody Zeller.
First reported by The Athletic’s Shams Charania, the Jazz have agreed to a contract with Zeller just ahead of the start of training camp.
Zeller, 29, was the fourth overall selection in the 2013 NBA Draft by the Charlotte Bobcats and is preparing for his tenth NBA season. He has played with the Charlotte Bobcats/Hornets and most recently the Portland Trail Blazers in his career.
Last season with Portland, Zeller played in a total of 27 games, averaging 5.2 points and 4.6 rebounds per game while shooting 56.7 percent from the floor.
In January, Cody Zeller underwent right knee surgery to address his right patellar avulsion fracture and was waived on February 8 after the Trail Blazers dealt CJ McCollum to the New Orleans Pelicans.
Now signing with the Utah Jazz, Zeller has a chance to be the team’s starting center on opening night, that is assuming he makes the 15-man roster. As of right now, Utah has 17 players under contract for the 2022-23 season, meaning that they will either need to waive or trade some players away to get to the league maximum of 15.
Alongside Zeller, the Jazz also have 2020 first-round pick Udoka Azubuike and rookie Walker Kessler, who was selected in the first-round of this year’s draft by the Minnesota Timberwolves and then traded to Utah as part of the Rudy Gobert trade.