Caption contest: What were Al and Love talking about?
This is a bit of a repeat point from yesterday's Downbeat, but half the battle with Al has been breaking the losing mentality. He reiterated that after last night's win,
"One thing about the Jazz, we're not just trying to make the playoffs," said Jefferson, who had 23 points, nine rebounds and seven blocked shots against his former team. "We're trying to win a title. It's a wonderful feeling to know you have a chance to go deep in the playoffs. It's something I haven't experienced in my six years in the league."
Jefferson, the Wolves' leading scorer each of the past three seasons, received a warm reception from fans during pregame introductions. He said it was a "weird feeling" to play his first game at Target Center against the Wolves.
"I'm glad to get this out of the way," Jefferson said. "The next time I won't have any feelings at all about coming back here."
That could explain a bit of his poor play in the first half last night. The "weird feeling" of playing against the Wolves wore off and he was able to get to work.
A bit of a scary stat. After holding opponents to a league-low 30% shooting from long range to start the season, the Jazz are allowing teams to shoot 40% in the month of December and 44% over their last 5 games.
It's still at 34% on the season whereas the past two have been at 35% and 36%.
I thought we had been a bit fortuitous with teams not knocking down open looks to start the season. So maybe it's just averages catching back up.
With Sloan's 1,211th win, he's 124 behind Don Nelson for the all-time lead. The Jazz sit at 21 wins this season. With an assumption that they get to at least 51 wins, Sloan would need 95 wins to break the record. That's two good seasons. With the Ultimate Evil that is upon us that is the lockout and no LeeLoo to stop it, Sloan may not get the chance.
Thursday open-ended getaway poll, what are you hoping is under the tree this season?