Jimbo’s Mailbag – All-Star Weekend and What’s in the Arena Storage Rooms?

February 17th, 2017 | by Jimbo Rudding
Melissa Majchrzak via utahjazz.com

Melissa Majchrzak via utahjazz.com

Some questions demand answers. Others demand Jimbo. Jimbo’s Mailbag is our regular dose of levity here at Salt City Hoops. Jimbo, by virtue of being recently featured in the Deseret News, is now the world’s most famous Utah-based basketball mailbag artist. You can submit questions to Jimbo at mailbag@saltcityhoops.com or by tweeting to @JimboRudding.

Q: How come Gordon Hayward gets all the handsome?

Right?!?! Dude came into the league looking like the young kid from Alf and then all of a sudden he gets married and now he looks like Sodapop Curtis from the Outsiders? How does that even happen? It’s like, save some handsome for the rest of us, G-Time! Whatever.

In reality, I don’t think Hayward got ALL the handsome. Raul Neto got his share too. I mean, I’m perfectly comfortable with who I am, but if Gordon and Raul wanted to go get Zupas and then come back to my place and watch Gilmore Girls, I’d be down. I’d even go to the mall and buy them each a turtleneck beforehand. I don’t even care. I’m silly like that.

The thing that baffles me is that it took one summer for Hayward to effortlessly go from the your neighborhood paperboy to GQ mega-stud. THAT’S the part that isn’t fair. I mean, it took me almost five years after college to realize that women were more attracted to guys who owned more than two pairs of pants.

Seriously though, Gordon is over there being crazy svelte and I’m over here dealing with the following:

  • Four out of 10 toenails are black.
  • A deviated septum.
  • A left shoulder that makes a very loud snaping noise whenever I lift my arm up a few inches.
  • A cluster of moles on the front of my neck that, if you were to connect them with a magic marker, would spell out “Goodies.”
  • An Arby’s addiction.
  • One dark beard-whisker that grows out of the bridge of my nose.
  • The incapability of knowing when it is and isn’t appropriate to talk about how my uncle drowned in the shower.
  • A foot that swells up whenever it rains.
  • An ear that leaks fluid whenever I get excited about something.
  • An extremely dry patch of skin on my back that last year got so infected that the water park had to close down and disinfect two slides.
  • A habit of calling people “rascal.”
  • An allergy to denim.

Oh well, what can you do? You get what you get. It is what it is, and other nonsensical clichés and whatnot. Some guys are born with a good face and amazing athletic skill and other guys are born with Nanny McPhee teeth and a haircut that looks like an opened hot dog bun.

You just gotta roll with who you are. No one can be you except for you and you are VERY good at being you. (Feel free to stitch that on a pillow or something.)


Q: Trade season is in full swing. What are your inside sources telling you?

This is the first time in a long time where I truly wouldn’t mind if the Jazz didn’t make any deals. The last seven years or so when the trade deadline came around I would’ve vowed to stop eating burritos for a year if that meant the Jazz would make a trade. There were some years where I was so fed up with things that I would’ve been fine with just cleaning house and starting over. I now realize that that was a little overboard…or was it??? Yeah, it was….but not really, because the Jazz were just mediocre at that time and we all knew the players we were watching would more than likely not be around for the long haul.

This year the Jazz finally DO have some core pieces that have the potential to make some noise and do some damage in the postseason. I would prefer both the noise and the damage, but if I had to choose between the two, I’d probably choose damage.

That being said, I’ve spoken to a few of my sources around the league recently and here is what I’ve found out: (Some of these don’t really have anything to do with the trade deadline, but it’s what my sources are telling me, so I have to pass it along.)

  • Amir Johnson likes nuts by themselves, but just not IN cookies or brownies.
  • Bojan Bogdanović wants to play in Charlotte because he really likes their uniforms.
  • The Cavaliers want to trade LeBron James for Boris Diaw straight up, but the Jazz want at least a second round draft pick too.
  • Dave Joerger, the coach for the Sacramento Kings, has said, “I’m SICK of this CRAP” a total of 118 times during practice and another 6 times in his sleep this year.
  • The Jazz are looking for a really good player that will definitely win them a championship without having to give up much if anything, but other teams are reluctant to do that deal.
  • Brook Lopez’s friends are telling him to stay with the Nets forever because it’s “so cool” how his name is “Brook” and he plays in “Brooklyn.”
  • The OKC Thunder proposed an Enes Kanter for Tyson Chandler/Marquese Chriss, but the Phoenix Suns turned them down because they want to keep their furniture nice.

That’s all I’ve heard so far. Things have been quiet in the league the last couple of days. Expect that to pick up though as the deadline gets closer and teams start to panic.


Q: What do you think is in the Vivint SmartHome Arena storage rooms?

Ha ha, I love this question! First, I’ve never actually seen any storage rooms in the arena, but I’m convinced there are some because where else would the Jazz Bear keep his gear? There’s probably stuff in arena storage that hasn’t seen the light of day since Frank Layden wore checkered suits…so maybe there’s garment bags full of checkered suits in there?

Here are a couple of things that I wouldn’t be surprised to find in the Vivian House Smart arena storage rooms:

  • The real, short-haired Alan Handy tied up and gagged.
  • A couple of old boxes of Taco Bell parachutes that still need to be strung and tied to t-shirts.
  • A sun-faded sign that says, “Get Loud, Be Proud.”
  • One or two of Siegfried and Jensen’s white tigers.
  • Boxes and boxes of Andris Biedrins hair care products.
  • Lanyards from mascot trade shows.
  • A couple of half-drunken Gatorade bottles.
  • Greg Miller’s baseball cards.
  • Tae Bo VHS tapes.
  • A life-size cardboard cutout of the Big O Tires guitar player from the commercial.
  • Les Olson.


Q: If you had to build a team around Jim Les, Rusty Larue, Shelvin Mack, Jason Hart, or Milt Palacio, who do you pick and why?

Probably Shelvin Mack. He’s a little bit better than anyone else on that list, which isn’t saying much for the guys on that list.

But let’s break it down:

  • Jim Les is the worst.
  • Rusty Larue only played in the league for like a minute and has a championship ring (Bulls 1997-1998)…think about that.
  • Jason Hart never met a shot he didn’t like. He also lost his backup role to Ronnie Price after missing eight games due to injury. Then he was traded for Brevin Knight.
  • Even though Bolerjack tried so hard to make us love him, Milt Palacio wasn’t great. 

This is a lovely group of mediocrity. The biggest problem for all of these guys though, besides that they weren’t particularly great at basketball, was that they weren’t John Stockton and Deron Williams. They were victims of circumstance. They all knew they were fighting for, at best, backup minutes and they couldn’t even lock that up. If you ask me, the formula for being a fan-favorite bench player is complex. You don’t turn the ball over and you don’t take dumb shots. Easy peasy, wheezy the juice (Encino Man).

Think about this–the Jazz struggled to get a good backup point guard for so long that we fans instantly fell in love with Eric Maynor right out of the gate. Eric Maynor. Who is Eric Maynor, you ask? Exactly.


Q: I heard that Shanghai might trade Jimmer to the Saigon Squids for Stephon Marbury and Egg Foo Young. You heard any rumblings?

Wow, I hadn’t heard that, but now I have this incredible craving for Panda Express.

Ah Jimmer. I love that guy. Such an offensive powerhouse and yet such a not-good defender. I get it, scoring is fun; it’s the sexy thing. Kids want to make the long-range three pointer or the crazy reverse layup. And you know why they want to do that? Because of only one thing–girls don’t understand defense.

Hear me out here: this is in no way a dig on girls or the female gender AT ALL. I’m just saying that boys do what girls like so that girls will notice them. Girls know what it means to make a three pointer or finish a pretty layup, but they don’t know what it means to stay in front of your man or trap the pick and roll. That’s why you don’t see a lot of kids out in their driveway practicing lateral quickness or boxing out. 

You want an example? Every girl in the country knows who LeBron James is, but only seven percent of females living west of the Mississippi river know who Avery Bradley and Tony Allen are. Point. Set. Match. Game. Matchbox 20. PowerPoint! (Seven percent is a complete guess on my part, but that’s what the early indications are based on census data.)

OK, maybe that was narrow-minded and sexist way of looking at it…but you know what? This is MY mailbag. You set up your own mailbag and you can say whatever you want.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to take away anything of what Jimmer did/does for the game of basketball. He was/is amazing to watch. He’s so good at throwing the ball through the iron circle. That’s probably what I love most about him.


Q: What’s Jimbo’s go-to order at Crown Burger? More importantly, has Jim Les ever been kicked out of Crown Burger?

Jim Les sure deserves to be kicked out. I’d kick him out in a heartbeat.

I really don’t go to Crown Burger all that often. I’ll stop by before a Jazz game so that I can park for free, but other than that I choose other greasy and disgusting foods to cram in my mouth hole.

I do enjoy watching the Crown Burger crew work, though. It’s like a well-oiled-burger-and-Greek food-making machine over there. They all have their spots and know what their role is in the burger/gyro creating process and they rarely make a mistake. My hat goes off to them and my belt goes off after them.

The best thing about Crown Burger is the group hug you get if you go there before a game and stand in line to order. The line is so long and there are so many people jammed in that small lobby space that it sometimes feels like you’re part of a human kebab.


Q: If you made the Skills Challenge, what would the contestants have to do?

You’re talking about the Skills Challenge obstacle course during All-Star weekend, right? The one where they dribble really fast around some cones and then throw the ball through an old tire and whatnot?

OK, yeah, if I were in charge, the players would be doing things a little differently. Here’s how my Skills Challenge would go:

  1. The player enters the court and approaches the starting line.
  2. The gun goes off and the player runs to a table of five jerseys and autographs each one. Mixed in with the five jerseys is one of their teammates jerseys. If they accidentally sign that one, 10 seconds will be added to their final time.
  3. The player then runs to a small table set to look like one you might find at a Cheesecake Factory. He sits down and is approached by a young fan asking for a picture and an autograph. The player has to dismiss the fan by saying, “Naw kid, I’m eating. Please respect my privacy.” If the player diverges from the script at all, they will have to start over.
  4. The player then gets up from the table and has five chances to heave a honey baked ham into the upper bowl of the arena. If the ham doesn’t reach the upper bowl, 10 seconds will be added to their final time.
  5. After the ham toss, the player will then have to kiss/make out with a $100 bill for 15 seconds.
  6. The player will then put on some drunk simulation goggles and attempt to ride a tricycle around the court twice.
  7. The player then has to drink an entire bottle of Sriracha without vomiting.

The player with the fastest time wins a trophy and a year’s supply of Sriracha.


Thanks for the questions this week, you guys! Remember to tell your Valentine about Jimbo’s Mailbag. Do it while they’re in the bathroom. Get down on the floor and yell it underneath the door if you have to. Make it weird.

Jimbo Rudding

Jimbo Rudding

I am a typical Jazz fan. I think Jordan pushed off, Derek Fisher lied, Bavetta cost us at least one game in the Finals, we should have drafted Tony Parker instead of Raul Lopez, and there will never be anything better than the Stockton to Malone days. I, along with Spencer Campbell @SCampbellSBN, started the first and longest-running Utah Jazz podcast on earth. I enjoy the in-of-doors and telling people a better way of doing whatever it is they're currently doing.
Jimbo Rudding

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