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Only Deron Williams and Trey Burke have made heaves for the Utah Jazz over the last decade


Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

The Utah Jazz have usually been a model of offensive efficiency and cut-throat end of quarter play. I can remember countless times when the team would extend a 3 point lead into a 6 point margin to finish up the last two minutes of the first. They would follow it up with pushing a 9 point lead into a 15 lead at halftime. And close out a third quarter making a game into a blowout. That's what some of us lucky ones remember. Over the last season we didn't see a strong team finish out quarters like the old Jazz. That said, over the last decade the team has been strong offensively. The Jazz have an average (average of values, not actual calculated value) offensive rating (ORTG) of 108.1 points per 100.0 possessions. By rank that's 10.7th best out of 30.0 teams. Boiling it down the absolute end of quarters end up being, if you managed the clock properly, a good shot. If you didn't, or if there is a broken play, it results in a junior high level half-court heave.

Sometimes you make the heave, sometimes you don't.

After looking at the last 10 seasons there have been 73 different Jazzmen to get on the court. And over the last decade the team has gone 2 for 168 from "heave" range. That's not making a lot of them.

Top 20:

2006 2016 Utah Jazz Heaves - Top 20

So, the only guys in a Jazz uniform to actually make a heave in the last decade have been Deron Williams and Trey Burke. Deron was fearless and shot because he had that high confidence. You want that from a leader. Trey shoots a lot of threes and has that confidence to think these shots are going in. To his credit, he's one of the only guys to see his shot go in from super duper downtown. For the record, if he didn't shoot ANY heaves his career three point percentage would be a somewhat passable 33.3%. With the +1 3PTM and +15 3PTA he is down to 32.9%, which isn't much off, but does look worse.

Alec Burks is 0 for 15, and if he didn't TRY any heaves he would be shooting 37.9% from deep for his career. That would change some opinions, I think. But of course, wanting to take these shots -- because you don't stop playing until the buzzer sounds -- is indicative of people who are either sociopaths or people willing to put the team first, over their own numbers. Or maybe both.

A special shout-out to Diante Garrett who was the only person to tie Trey's average of 5 heaves per season. Everyone else was either that much smarter, or that much less brave. Case in point: Gordon Hayward has played six seasons for the team but taken only four heaves that have counted. Shoot it just a few seconds *after* the buzzer, make it look like you are trying, but actually don't take unnecessary risks, I guess?

Next 20:

2006 2016 Utah Jazz Heaves - Top 21 to 40

None of these players were remarkable, taking either one or two heaves over their Jazz careers.

The Rest:

2006 2016 Utah Jazz Heaves - 41 to 73

I am glad that Kyrylo Fesenko has zero heaves, not just because if he had one then Jerry Sloan would have murdered him. I mean because he ones caught an inbound around halfcourt, and tipped it behind him to (I think) Raja Bell for a layup before the buzzer sounded. I don't think he was given the assist on that play, but it's worth it now that they didn't count that as a 3PTA.

So, heaves. The Jazz haven't made many. But is it better to shoot it and maybe get some points, or hold onto the ball because you understand math?