The Downbeat #977 - Another Eastern Conference Powerhouse in Town

Kevin C. Cox

Feel free to enjoy this Downbeat with your hoagie lunch.

Tonight the Hawks roll into town on a bit of a high, having won three straight since the trade deadline and 6 of their last 8. The good news is that only one of those was against a good team- the Grizzlies. The Jazz can definitely beat this team and should... of course that's what will worry us.

The matchups to watch out for are Smith/Millsap, Horford/Jefferson, and Teague, Harris/Any of our old timey guards. Further, get your ear plugs handy because their will probably be good amount of shrills of excitement from the fans of the fairer sex (and some guys who just can't contain themselves) when Kyle Korver is introduced.

The Jazz got some help from the Pacers as they manhandled the Warriors the other night. They need to seize that 6th seed because EVERYONE wants a 7 game series between the Jazz and Clipps. I know I do.

We can also probably count on their being just a few less Hawks fans in the stands of The Solution then there were Celts "fans". Probably. I'm jealous of anyone going to this game tonight. Should be a fun one.

A few years ago Josh Smith made some great comments about how Jazz fans trash talk. I remember he made comments about how we use stats in our trash talk. This is where a video or quote of that would go. Unforturnately it seems to be buried deep in the annals of the internet, as numerous different Google searches have returned nothing but articles about Josh Smith being traded. If anyone can find it and post it in the comments, you will be dubbed Dunker of the Day.

As MyLo stated yesterday, the Jazz HAVE to get this game. The Lakers are not far behind, and have a much more favorable schedule. Yesterday SBN's own Tom Ziller dropped a really great article predicting the West's playoff bracket, found here.

Many would start this conversation with 31-26 Utah, who at No. 7 in the West sits just 3.5 games ahead of No. 9. And I must say, the schedule is not a friend of the Jazz right now.

He goes on to reveal his prediction:

So basically, the schedule tells us that the Rockets and Jazz will switch place and the Lakers will get to .500.

Now, doesn't everyone feel better...

This morning I took the time I was sitting on the BART to listen to David Locke's podcast with Zach Lowe of Grantland. It wasn't a long listen, but it was worth the time. He definitely had some views that were different than Locke's, especially when it came to minute distribution, but was also very praising of Corbin and the players for keeping everything together. The reality is that with a team that has so many free agents, there has been very little in the way of disgruntled comments and flat out selfish play and that is a testament to the character of the players and Ty's ability to be able to please as many parties as possible.

I wanted to take this time to throw in my two cents about the passing of the trade deadline. My personal philosophy falls more in line with Clark's, as mentioned in his Downbeat this past Monday. I was a little disappointed that something didn't happen, namely I wanted to see Al moved to free up time for Favors/Kanter. However, from there its all a matter of wait and see. I am more than willing to give DL the benefit of the doubt and see what plays out this offseason before I jump on Amazon and place my order for the tar and feathers. If they squander all that precious cap space on mediocre players, or can't spin it into high picks, then I will feel justified in calling for the guillotine.

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