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Jae Crowder.

Jae Crowder takes dig at Cavs after Jazz debut: "I love playing within a system"

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When the Cleveland Cavaliers decided to trade Kyrie Irving to the Boston Celtics in the summer, they had high hopes for Jae Crowder who they acquired as part of the deal.

Defence was a huge problem for the Cavs last year and they believed that the small forward - who was one of the best defensive players in the league last season - would help to make them better on that end of the floor.

As well as his work defensively, Crowder was a knockdown shooter from beyond the arc in Boston and Cleveland saw him as the perfect teammate for LeBron James.

But things didn't quite work out for the 27-year-old in Ohio and he struggled to have any real impact on both ends of the floor.

As a result, he was one of six players traded by the Cavaliers at the trade deadline and was sent to the Utah Jazz.

The Marquette product made his debut for his new team on Sunday and enjoyed an impressive outing.

He posted 15 points, five rebounds, three assists and one steal in 29 minutes of action as the Jazz blew out the Portland Trail Blazers 115-96 on the road for a ninth straight win.

Crowder seemed to fit in well with his new teammates and enjoyed his debut. After the game, he appeared to take a dig at his old team with some interesting comments.

"I got back to having fun playing basketball with a great group of guys. I love playing within a system. It'll be fun," Crowder told Jazz broadcaster Kristen Kenney.

A lot was said about the state of the locker room in Cleveland and how there was a toxic atmosphere and tensions between players.

Crowder is certainly taking a pop at that and is also clearly criticising former head coach Tyronn Lue's coaching techniques as he praises the system in Utah despite only being part of the organisation for a matter of days.

He seems happy to be out of Cleveland and is willing to embrace his new surroundings in Salt Lake City, a place he's not unfamiliar with.

His father played for Utah in 1992 and he revealed that he's had a soft spot for the franchise since he was a kid, which he proved with his Instagram post after joining.

“I was excited to follow in my dad’s footsteps a little bit,” he said, per the Deseret News. “I’ve been a fan of the Jazz organization since I was a little kid, just like my dad. I was excited, my family was excited, and we’re happy to move.”

After being traded twice in the last six months, Crowder is hoping to settle in Utah and believes he can have a long future with the team.

If his debut is anything to go by, the Jazz certainly won't mind having him around for a long time.

Topics:
NBA
Western Conference
Rudy Gobert
Utah Jazz
Northwest Division

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