Jimbo’s Mailbag – What the Players Talk About

September 2nd, 2016 | by Jimbo Rudding
AP Photo/David Zalubowski

AP Photo/David Zalubowski

Welcome to the next edition of Jimbo’s Mailbag! At Salt City Hoops, we know that covering a team without any humor can be dreary. As such, we decided to add a little bit more levity to our site via Jimbo’s unique outlook on the world of Jazz basketball. Jimbo, by virtue of being recently featured in the Deseret News, is now the world’s most famous Utah-based basketball mailbag artist. Interested in submitting a question to Jimbo’s mailbag? Email it to Jimbo at mailbag@saltcityhoops.com or tweet @JimboRudding to appear.

Q: What does the Stars halftime line up look like? I need to know before I buy my season tickets.


Halftime is by far my favorite subject to talk about, so thanks for the question, Phelps.

I’m so excited for the Salt Lake City Stars season! The Utah Jazz’es’s new D-League team is gonna be the talk of the town. And when I say “town” I’m talking about Taylorsville, because the Utah Jazz will be the ACTUAL talk of the town on their run to the Western Conference Finals this season. At least, that’s what the experts on the Wide Wide World of Webs are saying will happen. And they’re NEVER wrong.

I don’t have the Stars halftime lineup for the entire season yet, but what I CAN give you are a few of the halftime suggestions I recently gave to a bunch of people at a family reunion I stumbled into while practicing tumbling alone at the park. They were an extremely nice family. Even though I didn’t know any of them, all I had to do was go up to a lady with a clipboard, tell her I was with Kevin, and she gave me a t-shirt and signed me up for the volleyball tournament. Some lady named Diane made some killer potato salad too!

Your question inspired me. I think I’m going to head up to Salt Lake Community College next week to see if I can corner Steve Brown and run some halftime ideas by him. Maybe some, or all, of these:

  • My neighbor Steve and I do a funny magic trick gag where I juggle some chainsaws and then pretend to lose control of one and it lands on him and his prosthetic leg falls off.
  • I have a 20-minute yodeling performance that I plan to do once I find someone who teaches yodeling lessons.
  • There’s this bit I do where a time portal opens up on the court and a couple of teens from the 70’s come out and basically I spend the rest of halftime showing them how cool the iPod Classic is.
  • I tell the story about how in 1993 I went to the drive-in theater and after going to the snack shack to get popcorn I accidentally got in the wrong car and watched the rest of Mrs. Doubtfire with an Asian family.
  • I drink a 32 oz. cup of water without taking a breath.
  • I do a TED talk about insurance where I explain what the words “premium” and “deductible” mean in a very clear and easy-to-understand way.
  • I enter the court wearing only a swimming suit and I pick a couple of lucky fans to lick the back of some miniature Charleston Chews and throw them at me. The first fan to get three to stick on me above my waist wins a year supply of Charleston Chews.
  • I fix three jammed printers while blindfolded.
  • I enter the court slow-dancing with what the crowd thinks is a mannequin, but then slowly realizes is Cher. (Cher’s people have yet to get back to me about this idea.)
  • I do tricks with my hacky sack using only my hands.
  • I give a 20-minute speech about how global warming is real because this summer was SO hot.


Q: What do the players talk about in the locker room and on the bus when they are by themselves?


Great question!… and I don’t mean great question as in I don’t know the answer. I mean, great question because I DO sort of know the answer. For instance, one time I stood by Gordon Hayward and Jeremy Evans at a community event and they were talking to each other, but the only thing I could hear is one of them saying the word “mauve” a lot. Anyway, I desperately wanted to talk to both of them so I just sort of edged my way inbetween them and said, “Are you serious?!” as if I had heard and been a part of their conversation the whole time. They didn’t respond, but I thought it was pretty awesome just to be that close to them and feel like one of the guys.

Even though I couldn’t hear what it was they were saying, I like to think it was something rad like maybe how awesome it is that they can afford to rent out skating rinks and hire teens to push them around on hotel luggage dollies anytime they want.

I’ve never been in the locker room with the players, but if I had to guess, they probably talk about stuff like:

  • The new Young Wheezy album.
  • How Andris Biedrins is doing.
  • How weird it is that no one has a landline anymore.
  • If The Cranberries are still a band or not.
  • Whether or not the boy in The Boy Who Could Fly really COULD fly.
  • Why office chairs are so expensive.
  • How Super Mario 2 was so much harder to conquer than Super Mario 3.
  • Why no one tries to go off Niagara Falls in a barrel anymore.
  • Taking trumpet lessons.
  • How they’ve all spent the majority of their lives wearing basketball shorts.


Q: In what game do you think the Jazz will wear their new sleeved uniforms first?


Well, looking at the schedule, I don’t think they’d be bold enough to wear them the first game against Portland. They’ll probably want to break them out when we fans least expect it, so I’m going to bet they wear them Friday, November 4th against the Spurs.

If I’m right, you owe me a $100 gift card to Banana Republic.


Q: What are the official Jimbo predictions for the season?


OK, let’s get right into it. Here are my predictions for the 2016–2017 Jazz season:

  • If things go well, the Jazz will trade Alec Burks.
  • If things go really well, the Jazz will make a Blockbuster trade where they’ll renovate some old Blockbusters and turn them into mini-indoor courts for kids in low-income families.
  • If things go really REALLY well, Allen Handy will get a haircut and some appropriate jeans for his age.
  • The Jazz will win 50 games this season.
  • Boris Diaw will quickly become a fan favorite.
  • The veteran experience of both Boris Diaw and Joe Johnson will win the Jazz some close games this year.
  • The only injury the Jazz will have all season is Joel Bolomboy’s sore gluteus maximuses from the hard arena chairs.
  • Gordon Hayward and Joe Johnson will be on the court at the same time more than we think.
  • Favors will be an All-star.
  • Gail Miller will become aware of Jimbo’s Mailbag and invite me to sit with her during a game.
  • Dennis Lindsey will hear about how I can make a layup with my eyes closed while burping and bring me in for a look.
  • The first time James Harden and the Rockets come to Utah this year, Harden’s beard will glow red and it will be because I am shining 30 laser pointers at it during his free throws.


Q: If the Jazz had to change their name, what are some suggestions you would have?


Hmmm, I like the “Jazz” so I don’t think I’d be in favor of that. But since you asked, I guess I’ll give it my best shot:

  • Utah Back-ticklers
  • Salt Lake Brine Flies
  • Utah LeBron Jameses (I’d only vote for this one if LeBron signed with the Jazz)
  • Wasatch Wagons
  • Utah Point of the Mountains
  • Utah Drivers
  • Salt Lake Families
  • Utah Non-Jim Les’es
  • Salt Lake Splash Pads
  • Deseret Dirty Dr. Peppers


Thanks for all the questions, you guys! Remember to send a letter to your senators and congressman telling them about Jimbo’s Mailbag. Maybe go ahead and throw a handful of grass clippings in the envelope before you send it. 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

One Comment

  1. Paul Johnson says:

    I think in the picture you inserted in this blog article, the three Jazz players (Rudy Gobert, Alec Burks and Rodney Hood) are talking about what their children would look like, if Rudy Gobert married Serena Williams (and what sport they would play).

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