The sky is falling, none of our players are good, and the Jazz will finish last in the west. Just kidding.
I know I said that poor shooting doomed the Jazz, and that’s true. However, the Blazers won because they shot less poorly, not because they were good—Utah shot a paltry 31.6% from the field to Portland’s 35%. Ouch.
The marquee players for Portland, Zach Collins and Caleb Swanigan, combined for 26 points on 7-25 shooting, but went 10-12 at the line. The pair out-rebounded the Jazz starting bigs 20-9, another big reason for the loss.
Utah’s Donovan Mitchell finished with an inefficient 19 points on 8-26 shooting with two assists and 4 steals. Some games are like that, though. Here is what Tony Jones of the Salt Lake Tribune thought:
He was never playing badly. His shots just weren't dropping. Outside of one bad pass, he was doing pretty much everything right https://t.co/2c6dMzBRmO— Tony Jones (@tribjazz) July 8, 2017
The man can play basketball, alright? I know his shots weren’t falling, but just watch these highlights:
Donovan Mitchell can be a point guard in this league— Tony Jones (@tribjazz) July 8, 2017
I would tend to agree, Mr. Jones.
Rookie center Tony Bradley had 10 points on 5-9 shooting, 1 rebound, and 1 block. He’ll need to develop a better nose for the ball if he’s going to produce at the NBA level.
Joel Bolomboy—whom I’ve stanned for every time his name is brought up—performed . . . sub-optimally, scoring just six points on 1-7 shooting (ugh) and snatching 8 rebounds. Hopefully he can figure out how to move without the ball a bit better, because he has the tools to succeed.
Overall, the team basketball wasn’t great, but that’s to be expected in summer league, which is basically pickup basketball on steroids (figuratively, of course). However, the individual performances of Mitchell and Swanigan in particular were fun to watch.
The Jazz are back at it tomorrow at 6pm MDT against Sindarius Thornwell and the Los Angeles Clippers. The game will be shown on ESPN3.
(Full game stats can be found here)