Tonight the Utah Jazz will host the East leading Toronto Raptors. T-Dot is on the last of a three game road trip, and flying back home right after the game. The Jazz have lost six in a row, and need to make a stand here. We need a hero. We need Steve Novak. Or well, anyone at this point. Steve has the added benefit of being up against his old team/coach. I don't think it will hurt, heck, the team is starting Rodney Hood tonight. Seriously, something's gotta give with the Jazz.
It wasn't always like this, though. The Jazz are 25-11 against the Raps, and a dominant 13-5 in Utah. This season the Raptors are 14-4. These aren't the same Raps. And honestly, these aren't the Stockton and Malone Jazz.
It's a new era where humble beginnings will pay off, down the line. But right now we're like a 3rd level character in an 11th level adventure. Or basically a team with fewer total wins this season than the sum total of consecutive losses right now.
Still, it's going to be a fun game. I'm going to watch. You should too.
- PG: Kyle Lowry vs. Trey Burke
- SG: Greivis Vasquez vs. Rodney Hood
- SF: Terrence Ross vs. Gordon Hayward
- PF: Amir Johnson vs. Enes Kanter
- C: Jonas Valanciunas vs. Derrick Favors
No DeMar DeRozan or Alec Burks tonight, so both Dwane Casey and Quin Snyder are going to their benches. Vasquez allows Lowry to play off the ball and be a short shooting guard. Hood gives the Jazz more floor spacing, and a guy who can drive a little bit. Ultimately, though, the game is going to be won or lost by Gordon Hayward. He is the best player on the floor, I'd really like to see him start playing like it from the first quarter.
- Bench scoring: Louis Williams (14.0 ppg) is having a really nice season for Toronto, no one on the Jazz bench even averages 8.0 ppg
- Bench bigs: Tyler Hansbrough, Patrick Patterson, and Chuck Hayes will all get in this game, but none of them have the pure length of Rudy Gobert. Trevor Booker could get suckered into taking more outside jumpers this game because the Raptors bigs will be doing so
- X-Factor: Lou vs. whatever we scramble up at guard . . . Joe Ingles? Ian Clark? Toure' Murry? Steve Novak? At guard?
In the last game I said Arron Afflalo and Alec Burks, one guy got injured, and the other got ejected; but they were big pieces of the game. Am I still psychic? Tonight I think the big match-up is going to be Enes Kanter and Jonas Valanciunas. Who wins that battle will be on the team that wins this game.
James Johnson becomes the Linas Kleiza avatar on this earth, and scorch the Jazz.
Jokes aside (who is joking? JJ is totally Kleiza), this is going to be a fun game of two teams that match up well with one another.
GO JAZZ GO!
Who is going to win this game?
This poll is closed
The Utah Jazz
The Toronto Raptors