That’s an idiom that we’ve all heard and repeated at some stage or another. It’s also a pretty concise understanding of this Jazz team. Usually, the traditional characteristics of the Utah Jazz were: Jerry Sloan getting T’d up; pick and rolls; physical defense; and being nearly impossible to defeat at home. Those characteristics may no longer be valid.
I’m unable to google a list of coaching technical fouls for this season – but if Sloan was getting them I’m sure the media would be able to tell me about it.
That’s just an idea though, as this season the Jazz have lost 8 games at home already (some games given up to less than amazing talent, at that). Last season the Jazz only lost 8 games at home. Furthermore, two seasons ago the Jazz only lost 4 games at home. I had to look this up to see if
During that same period of time, the Jazz have limped to a 365-383 record on the road (48.8%). The standard of good teams is the ability to win on the road. This is true of the Jazz as well, as they won 27 road games (65.9 winning %) in 1994-1995 – essentially the year they became true contenders. This started a trend of 7 years in a row with a road winning percentage of at least 51.2%. During this span the Jazz went to the Western Conference Finals 5 times. Correlation does not effectively lead to causation; but it remains to be seen that winning on the road is a hallmark of a good team.
Before the psychology of this young team might have been "we don’t need to give it all on the road, because we’ll make it up at home". This season the psychology may be "we need to really give it our all, and make sure we win on the road", at the expense of winning at home. Teams can’t take winning at home for granted. Lest of all this Jazz team that may actually have a chance of HOSTING a 1st round series for the first time since Ostertag was starting.
There are only 26 games left this season, and I’m encouraged by this new found ability to win on the road. But in order to remain among the best in the West, the Jazz need to bring the same focus, effort and heart at home as well as on the road.
@AllThatAmar on Twitter