SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Sports) – Joe Ingles spent eight years in Utah, becoming one of the all-time Jazz fan favorites.

But he understands why the Jazz traded him last season, even though he wanted to stay here.

“There’s definitely no ill feeling or anything towards anyone here,” Ingles said at Friday’s shootaround. “I’m really happy for them, and I hope we smack them tonight. But every other game, I hope they do really well.”

Ingles will play his first game against the Jazz Friday night as a member of the Milwaukee Bucks, who own the best record in the NBA.

Ingles wonders what would have happened had he not suffered a season-ending knee injury last January.

“If I didn’t hurt my knee, am I still here?” Ingles asked. “I wanted to play here my whole career, and that’s what I thought I was going to do. My family grew up here and Utah is like home to them. I told Millie yesterday that we were going back to Utah, she was asking to see here school friends and stuff.”

Of all the memories over eight years with multiple runs in the playoffs, the one game that sticks out the most was the Jazz first autism awareness night, honoring his son Jacob.

“The first one that Jacob was diagnosed,” Ingles said. “The place was packed, and to have Renee there and obviously everything we had been through those months leading up to when that game was.”

After being traded to Portland in February, Ingles signed with the Bucks this past summer. Over the last ten games, he is shooting 58 percent from 3-point range for Milwaukee.

Only Jordan Clarkson, Rudy Gay and Udoka Azubuike remain from last year’s team, and Ingles has been a little surprised by how quickly the Jazz roster has been turned over.

“Pretty crazy, really,” Ingles said. “It obviously shows that they are rebuilding or re-tooling or whatever you want to call it. They’ve got a plan in place. They’ve got some really good players back, with all the picks and  young guys. They’re going to be good pretty soon.”

Even though they never got as far as they wanted, Ingles remains close with all of his former teammates.

“We had a really close group of guys, that core group that was here for four or five years,” Ingles said. “I still speak to a lot of them. I still steak to Donovan, Mike, Rudy, all of them. We didn’t get the ultimate goal of getting further than we did when we were all here. But those relationships you build, there’s nothing like it.”