Gone are the days when downbeats don’t include actual basketball. The season has officially started, and Utah Jazz basketball is back, and has returned to its winning ways.
For the first time since 2012, the Utah Jazz have started the season 1-0. Defeating the Denver Nuggets last night in a defensive showcase, the Jazz put on display their strength and tenacity with an incredible fourth quarter run.
Now that we have had a full night’s rest to digest the game, here are a few things that caught my eye:
Alec Burks looked absolutely terrific. He scored 16 points on 7-10 shooting, and gave the Jazz a much-needed offensive boost in the second half which sparked their run. He also looked like his old self with this awesome baseline dunk.
Ekpe Udoh and Thabo Sefolosha will provide some solid defensive depth. Both these guys were on the court during the Jazz’s 26-5 fourth quarter run, and it was easy to see why the Jazz picked them up this offseason. They finished with plus-24 and plus-25 in the box score plus-minus, which obviously shows the effect they had on the game Wednesday night.
Udoh also played part in an incredible sequence, which was one of the turning points of the game. A huge block and a houdini-esque AB reverse on the other end had The Viv rocking and ultimately sealed the game for the Jazz.
Ricky Rubio is going to do great things for the Utah Jazz. Rubio finished the game with 10 assists in his first official stint with the Jazz, which was more than any Jazz player accomplished last season.
Although this pass did not count as an assist due to a failed layup attempt, it shows Rubio’s court vision and ridiculous passing ability.
Rubio also eclipsed the 3,000 assist mark last night, and had a great response when asked about it post-game.
Ricky Rubio on his 3000 assists in his career: I still need 12000 to pass Stockton. I love Rubio more and more— Barles Charkley (@Hookemcougs) October 19, 2017
And, not to mention, his flow was on point last night.
Joe Johnson continues to climb the all-time scoring list, this time passing Antawn Jamison.
Following former Jazzman Gordon Hayward’s grusome injury Tuesday night, ESPN’s Woj reported that Hayward will most-likely miss the remainder of the season. Here’s to a speedy recovery and hoping Hayward makes it back on the court as soon as possible, whenever it may be.
After surgery tonight, Boston's Gordon Hayward is unlikely to return this season, agent Mark Bartelstein told ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) October 19, 2017