November 26, 2012; Auburn Hills, MI, USA; Portland Trail Blazers power forward Jared Jeffries (1) sits on the bench with ice on his nose after getting injured in the third quarter against the Detroit Pistons at The Palace. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Jared Jeffries Retires, Becomes Nuggets Scout

Oct. 10, 2012; Ontario, CA, USA; Portland Trail Blazers forward LaMarcus Aldridge (12) and forward Jared Jeffries (1) on the bench with ice bags on their knees in the second half of the game against the Los Angeles Lakers at the Citizens Business Bank Arena. Portland won 93-75. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

In this morning’s vein of bygone Blazers, Jared Jeffries has also joined the Denver Nuggets organization, but not as a player. Adrian Wojnarowski reports that Jeffries will retire from basketball in order to join the Nuggets in a scouting position. This makes a lot of sense for Jeffries, who’s knees have gone after 11 NBA seasons.

The Portland Trail Blazers waived Jared Jeffries immediately following the conclusion of the 2012-2013 season so that they could maximize cap room for the coming year. Although Jeffries is on the wrong side of 30, he was still one of Portland’s better defenders off the bench (a fact that should attest more to the overall quality of the roster, not necessarily Jeffries’ prowess).

Jared has a longstanding, working relationship with Nuggets General Manager, Tim Connelly, who was brought in to replace Executive of the Year, Masai Ujiri; now working in the Toronto front office. Connelly worked in the Wizards’ front office during Jeffries’ tenure with Washington (the first four seasons of his career).

Jared did not leave a lasting impression on Blazer fans, but he should still be greatly appreciated for three big reasons:

  • He was part of the trade that sent Raymond ’20-footer’ Felton back to New York.
  • He raised the overall level of Portland’s bench defense from egregious to negligible.
  • He knew he would be waived, but left without making a fuss, because he understood the situation.

I always appreciate players that know when to call it. Sure he could have found a desperate squad to take him as their 15th man so he could collect a paycheck, but he elected to rest his body and contribute in a way that is much more valuable. I wish him luck in Denver and am curious to see what kind of talent he sniffs out for them in the coming years.

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