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The Downbeat - 7 December 2010 - #376 - The Shoulda Been Inception Edtion

   The Jazz have now held 11 consecutive opponents to under 100 points.  That's the longest such streak in the Deron Williams era.  Wanna guess what the longest streak is since 1990 for the Jazz?  It's 26.  Wanna guess what year that was?  The 2004 season.  The Jazz did have the second lowest pace that season.  For nearly two months though, not one opponent broke 100 points.  They went just 12-14 over that span though.  After giving up triple digits to Denver, they went another 11 games without giving up 100 points.

That's good for the 6th-best streak since 1990.

  Millsap has quite a bit of competition for MIP:

Paul Millsap, Utah: We all saw this coming, yet it should be acknowledged. Finally out of Carlos Boozer's shadow, and now paired up with Al Jefferson , a big man who can slide over to center without giving up 4 inches, Millsap has been a huge contributor for a Jazz team playing arguably their best ball of the past 4 years. Posting a career high 22.28 PER, shooting a career high 60.9 TS%, averaging a very Boozer-like 20.7 and 9.5 per 40, even improving as a passer to fill in for the now-Bulls forward. You probably won't see this guy back in a 6th man role ever again.

You have the likes of Al Horford, Russell Westbrook, Kevin Love, and Luis Scola all having huge years compared to last.  There are a lot more too.

  Jeff Hornacek gave a little insight into how he helps the guys with shooting:

Shooting is all about confidence.  As a coach, I make sure the players believe they don't have to speed everything up just because you're in the NBA. Night in and night out, just get to the point where you're playing the game; that's a little psychology I use on shooting.

That sounds anti everything I've heard from NBA players getting into the league.  The first thing a lot of them will say that surprises them is just how much faster the game is.  I guess what he's saying is that don't let that affect how you play your game.  Having a great practice and improving your skills will allow will allow you to adjust to the speed.

He also talks about becoming a head coach at the college level.  I wonder if Corbin were to get a head coaches job if Horny would be brought on as an assistant.

  Are we still at the beginning of a run to making the finals or even the western conference finals?  Take a look at the graph that depicts the playoff success of the Jazz since 1984.  It took quite a few seasons for the Jazz to break into the WCF and then the finals.  0 is for no playoffs, 1 a first round exit, and so on:


You can't use the past as an indicator for the future, but what you can see is that it took a while for the Jazz to realize success with three hall of famers at the helm.  So are we just at the beginning of a new surge?  The Jazz have had varying success in the playoffs since their return.

No one was expecting the jump from no playoffs to the western conference finals the next year.  How far do the Jazz have to go into the playoffs this season for it to be considered an improvement?  Any series win, regardless of round, over the Lakers would have to be viewed as a huge win given our past and that they're still the team to beat.  Is a second round, hard-fought series against LA considered a success even if the Jazz lose in 7?  Do they have to make the WCF?

Realistically, where do you see the Jazz in 3 years?  That sounds a lot like an interview question.

  Going based off of last year's release, the first round of results for All-star voting should be released this week sometime.

What are your guesses for for the number of votes Deron has received?  Last year he had 94,715.  Paul had about 250k, Kidd had a little over 200k, and Nash had 272k.  Does Deron break 150k?  200k?