Sloan says he hopes Jazz keep Kirilenko

Updated: June 19, 2007, 2:36 PM ET
Associated Press

SALT LAKE CITY -- Despite complaints about his playing time and even tears during the playoffs, Andrei Kirilenko likely will remain with the Utah Jazz.

Andrei Kirilenko


Utah Jazz


2007 Season Stats
70 8.3 4.7 2.9 .471 .728

"We're gonna keep him, as far as I'm concerned," coach Jerry Sloan said Monday.

"We're not looking. I don't like to trade people," he said. "But we've got to do what's best for the franchise, always."

Kirilenko, Utah's top draft pick in 1999 and its highest-paid player, averaged less than 10 points in 17 playoff games as the Jazz advanced to the Western Conference finals. He made 21.3 percent of his 3-point shots during the season, a career low.

"He's got to come and play," Sloan said. "I mean, when he doesn't come and play hard, he can blame it on whatever he wants, but all I can say is what I see on the floor.

"We loved the way when he plays great," the coach said. "And he can be good all the time if he works at it."

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press