Game 56: Golden State Warriors 98 @ Utah Jazz 104
Woo! Jazz now need 7 more wins for playoff contention!
The Utah Jazz defeated the Golden State warriors in an epic battle tonight. Well, maybe not epic. 'State was playing with out two of their best players, and somehow Nate Robinson shot the ball 10 times. So, it was the Jazz game to win from the outside. Warriors Head coaching calling crunch time plays that ended up with Andris Biedrins taking jumpers gets you exactly the result you are looking for: a loss.
The Jazz won this game, but the Warriors are hoping to win the war by getting enough ping pong balls to turn the pick they shouldn't have had into gold.
David Lee had 26 and 12, while shooting a stellar 10/16. Dorrell Wright had a very forgettable game, where he shot 3-12. You kind of expect him to make at least ONE three pointer, and the one he missed in the last seconds of the game could have made things a little more crazy. The Jazz went up by "sufficient" margins a few times during the fourth quarter but 'State kept fighting back. They were up by 6, then a Klay Thompson three cut it in half. After a time out the Jazz scored three times in a row, and upped the margin to 9 points. Klay responded with 5 points of his own, leaving our lead only four.
Dorrell misses a shot he's made against us so many times, and we "escape" with a home win against a tanking team. We get the W, but did we really earn this one? If we're playing at full-ish throttle and barely beat the Warriors -- making the playoffs is purely a financial aspiration; we're probably not going to be advancing. (Why go to a blind date with the knowledge that you're going to get turned down? That's just a waste in some books. Only get out there when you're capable of getting the job done . . . it would have saved Stockton and Malone a few early first round exits from their resumes, and gotten them more help sooner . . . but hey, that's like, totally my opinion, man.)
Aside from struggling to beat this team I liked what the Jazz did. Millsap was sick and still shot better than 50 fg%, on his way to 12 and 7, with 2 steals and assists. Big Al Jefferson, man, 30 and 11, with 5 blocks. Wow. I like this Big Al. He went 13/18 and got to the line 5 times. More like this please. Devin Harris was on fire from deep, and finished with 28 points, 5 assists, 5 made threes, and 8 free throw attempts.
No disrespect to our youth (whom I love dearly), *if* we're a playoff team -- then we get there because of those three guys. And *if* we make any noise in the playoffs -- we're not going to be able to do it without those three guys playing like they want it.
They wanted it tonight.
And we got the win.
Short term goal (win every night) complete. Medium term goal (playoffs), still on schedule. Long term goal (championship) . . . not charted yet.
Let's Go Jazz!
And big ups again to Moni for the game thread.
Remember when I even dared to mention Klay Thompson in a predraft post -- and everyone went Springer? Sheesh. Dude had 23 points and 4 threes -- sometimes you kinda need a guy who hits jumpers in this league. Ha ha.