Tonight the Jazz host the Portland Trail Blazers. They are a good team, and a division rival. We’ll face them four times during the regular season. I don’t think we learned much from each other in our two pre-season games. Tonight is where the fun starts. They are a very talented team with a number of legit Jazz Killers on the roster. At least the Jazz fans attending will know for which players to root for this time.
While we may have a better record (by percentage points) than the Blazers – they are clearly the better team across the board. The biggest difference is their crazy pace. I guess Brandon Roy was holding them back all those years? They are Top 10 in Own PPG, Opp. PPG, Page, and Def RTG. They are 11th in Off RTG. We’re not that bad on offense (technically we’re better); but our defense lags behind theirs. Both teams take care of the ball, and hit the glass.
Not that much
Much more info after the jump!
We split the preseason games, winning ours at home. We won that game with Nate McMillan playing his starters against our 2nd and 3rd string dudes. I was particularly impressed with Enes Kanter’s post defense on LaMarcus Aldridge. I wonder how our bigs will handle the potential All-Star – because God knows we can’t handle guys like Jamaal Crawford . . .
The Beats and the Rests:
An ailing Big Al is our only advantage in the starting lineup. Ouch.
Tonight I’m going to focus on how LaMarcus does against our bigs. He’s had a very solid season so far – but he hasn’t really gone through the gauntlet of good Western Conference bigs yet. (He has played a few – but not nearly as many as our man Millsap has) If Millsap can have his usual efficient game – it can open up a few good things for our guys on offense.
This is the first game of the season – so no remix this time around.
- Greg Oden is out . . . you know . . . he’s still on the team and all.
- Raja Bell is probably out
- Jamaal Tinsley is out
- Hopefully we see more of Alec Burks aka Elrich Borques