The Utah Jazz had a difficult week, once again, for the nth week in a row. The 12-16 team has played the entire season without starting point guard Dante Exum. As for last game they ended up tipping off their last 12 games without starting center Rudy Gobert. Now there is news that , one of the few scorers on the team, is set to miss at least six week of action. Things are difficult, and will remain difficult for some time. But on the small scale there were some small victories last week. The Jazz defeated the Phoenix Suns 110-89. They went out on the road and were dropped unceremoniously by the Golden State Warriors 103-85. Last night the Jazz lost to the Los Angeles Clippers 109-104 -- a winnable game and the 15th straight loss to the Clippers. Overall the team did the best they could, even if it was yet another 1-2 week. Our best player really can't carry such an injured team. It was a miracle that they were even leading so late against a playoff team without starters , and ... right? Let's look at what they all did this week.
Gordon had a much better week than last, at the very least he's getting those points up come hell or high water. He dropped 24 and 28, with an 8 point stinker in the middle of the week. He plays the most (105.10 minutes this week), he shoots the most (44 FGA, 16 3PTA, 25 FTA), and he has to be the team leader. He looked a bit more like it this week, despite the nagging feeling that he's not really equipped to be the #1 scorer day in and day out. With so many players out he's only going to be asked to score that much more while being that much more of a target for other defenses.
The Jazz are going to rely on his play over the next month to stay in striking distance of the playoffs.
This Week's Performance: 20.00 ppg (.3864 / .1875 / .9200), 5.67 rpg, 3.33 apg, 1.33 spg, 0.33 bpg
Star Meter: This entire season has been a test for the star. Gordon is in his peak right now, and right now he's losing a lot of games that aren't his fault. How he keeps leading a team, and professional he is, will go a long way towards determining how he is perceived. But as far as how things are going, I think I almost have to keep him at three stars for his week. Had he led the team to a W over the Clippers he would have been a four star player.
Derrick only played in two games this week, miss last night's game to back spasms. IN his two games he did manage to play 32.89 mpg -- that's pretty much pushing the envelope of how much he can play without causing flare ups of his plantar fasciitis. He still misses his buddy Rudy in the paint, but had a pretty effective week -- including getting to the line 6.00 times a game. That's like three weeks of Al Jefferson play. No steals this week, but he did bring it with blocks. He also shot the ball 0.67 times less per game than Hayward did -- so that's an improvement! Favors needs the ball!
This Week's Performance: 17.50 ppg (.4643/ -- / .7500), 9.00 rpg, 1.50 apg, 0.00 spg, 2.00 bpg
Star Meter: I continue to like what I see. As a bigman he's somewhat at the whims of the players around him -- he wasn't born with the ball in his hands like a wing player or guard is. But when he does get the ball good things are happening. It's not impossible to see that Derrick is more important than many people recognize. Four stars for sure.
Rudy once again missed every game. It's not his fault though.
This Week's Performance: --
Star Meter: He has missed 12 games in a row, but I think most everyone agrees that his presence is immense, and he remains a four star player.
A number of our guys stepped up big this week. Most of them were wings, which is nice -- but our best player is a wing. It would be great to see some bigmen step up, but beggars can't be choosers.
- (3 games, 32.69 mpg) -- HUGE MINUTES for Hood this week. He had some of his best overall games this week as a result on his way to averaging 14.67 ppg (.4688 / .4615 / .8000), 2.67 rpg, 1.67 apg, and 1.33 spg. We need more of this Hood going forward. The one who makes shots and is assertive.
- (3 games, 23.51 mpg) -- Ingles had a big week, finally getting minutes was a reason for it. He responsed by averaging 10.00 ppg (.5000 FG%, .5455 3PT%), 3.50 rpg, 2.00 apg, and 1.50 spg. THe team wasn't always successful when he was on the court (+/-), but he wasn't the reason for that. .
- Alec Burks (3 games, 21.74 mpg) -- Alec had to leave the last game due to multiple injuries -- which sucks because he was 5/5 FG, 1/1 3PT in that game and would have been helpful down the stretch. Outside of that he still found a way to be what we need him to be -- a bench weapon. Burks averaged 12.33 ppg, 2.67 rpg, and shot .5417 FG% while doing it. He didn't dime much (only 0.67 apg) this week, which isn't fun. But 12 ppg off the bench usually means you are doing something right.
(3 games, 22.75 mpg) -- Burke didn't shoot well this week (.3750 / .2000 / 1.0000) unless we look at his two total free throw attempts. When he's not making shots he's not as effective as other bench players because they usually have a more diverse skill set. He averaged 9.67 ppg, 2.67 apg, 1.33 rpg, and 0.67 spg though. He's doing things, but this last week he was not at his best. He did have a good game against the Warriors, a night most everyone else did not play well.
(3 games, 21.73 mpg) -- Neto didn't shoot 8000 billion % this week, but he's still very good when he's out there on the floor. He finished with 6.67 ppg, 2.33 rpg, 2.33 apg, and 2.00 spg this week. He finished the team +28 in +/-, best on the team.
(3 games, 24.21 mpg) -- Booker is playing half the game now, and averaging 5.00 ppg, 6.33 rpg, 1.00 apg, and 0.67 spg. He does a little of everything, and went 1/2 from deep this last week and ended up shooting .5385 FG%.
Honorable mentions:continues to start and get real world minutes (19.48 mpg this week!) that will help him more than dumb minutes in the NBADL, and he averaged 4.67 ppg, 5.00 rpg, and 1.00 apg this week . . . finished the week with 5.00 ppg, 5.00 rpg, and 1.33 bpg, and needs to play more than he currently does even if that means playing Booker less . . . plays defense . . . plays offense . . . both players don't play a lot but will be getting deeper looks now with Alec Burks out . . . continues to do good things in practice, I assume.
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