For the second straight game and night in a row, the outcome of the contest was in the balance for about 2 and a half quarters of basketball. I wish I could tell you that this is going to get a lot better, but I can tell you that it will get a little better because we play 12 home games in the month of January. Being at the Energy Solutions Arena is going to do wonders for this team.
Tonight's demise was easy to diagnose and predict. It could have been much much worse considering the Nuggets started 4-16 from the 3 point line and the Jazz were 7-14 at the same point in the game. But it's easy to get big leads, when every other trip up the court is a 3 on 1 fast break and it's easy to have lots of 3 on 1 fast breaks when your opponent is turning the ball over so often. So there is the extent of my "expert" analysis.
But you might want to start enjoying these game recaps, while you can, because I have a sinking feeling that in about 2 weeks, they are going to turn into memes of babies crying and quick sentences that sum up another road blowout. Wash, rinse, repeat. But for now, you get a very musically-themed, Jazzy write up.
I'm not awarding him the strongest dynamic, just because there is a current twitter movement to free him from the chains that bind his playing time. He was impressive overall in his limited minutes. But more than his puffed up stat line against 2nd and 3rd stringers, I liked his poise and how he looked with the basketball in his hands. Before tonight, I had thought that hopes he could be a starting point guard in this league were too optimistic. But the guy has all of the tools to be one: handles, court vision, a pull up jumper, ability to finish at the rim, and moxie. I don't know what moxie is, but Alec Burks has it. It will be fun to see the trends in his playing time this year and if he ever gets to play in a two guard system along side Gordon Hayward. It just seems obvious that this will be the direction of the short term future.
For the second game in a row, Enes Kanter looked like he belonged in the NBA. He is exceptional at going out of his area to get rebounds, he is a big man, who actually plays big, and again it needs to be stressed at how young and inexperienced he is. He is not making shots, but he is creating good looks for himself. I think it is often cliche to say that missed shots will become made shots with more time and practice, but in Kanter's case, I believe it. I thought he was not ready for 12-15 minutes a night a week ago. I was very wrong.
He battled hard, you have to love him for trying and he was like 80% of our offense in the first 8 minutes of the game. He wants to win and he tried to play through what appeared to be a minor injury to his knee. Bless his heart, no one wants to win more than that guy, it seems.
CJ didn't have a great game by any means, but he played better than most of his teammates. He made 3 of his 4 three pointers and also attacked the basket. I don't mind him launching away from 3 as long as he is doing it with confidence and mixing in an occasional drive to the hoop.
Pretty much every other Jazz player.
They all shot about 50%. They all seem to have contributed to the blowout with lazy passing and mediocre defense. And they all had sad puppy dog faces on the bench to end the game.
I will single him out to give this one piece of advice: Just because you can create your own shot, doesn't mean you should all the time, every time. You're welcome.
Coach Ty Corbin
I'm not going to put him in this category because of his questionable playing time distributions or because we have two blowouts on our hands. I just feel for the guy. Think of how we feel as Jazz fans right now and then triple that feeling. That's the angst and pressure and disgust that Tyrone Corbin feels right now. He looks like he is literally about to explode. Did anyone see the play where Danilo Galinari blew by Hayward in the 3rd quarter and Hayward made almost no attempt to defend him? Corbin flew off his coaching seat like a steaming kettle pot and got right into Hayward's face. You just haven't seen things like this your whole Jazz fandom.
The Jazz's "non-rebuilding" plan
The Jazz don't want to go into full rebuilding mode, because they feel that the young guys will develop excuses for losing, rather than basketball skills. I get that. But what happens if you talk about trying to win and then look like you are tanking? Nothing good. If the team is losing AND the vets are leading the way, that is going to lead to frustration for EVERYBODY associated with the team. And I mean everybody.
Jazz fans calling out the players for not trying
I know it doesn't seem like it, but these guys don't want to lose badly and look bad doing it. Give them a break for being less athletic, practiced and talented. We are two games into the season. They are trying their very best to play well. That's the scary part.
like I said, I wish I could say that things are going to get a lot better. But this team is going to play a lot better at home. So go out and support them on Friday night. Go start a "free Alec Burks" cheer or something. Just don't get too excited, because the Sixers are a sneakily good team this season.