Last night, the Utah Jazz took down the New Orleans Pelicans on the road to extend their win streak to six games. They’re now 8-2 in their last 10 games. This is the second six-game streak of the season, but Utah still has a lot of work to do if they want to get out of the hole the December schedule left them in. This is true both in the standings and in the media’s weekly power rankings. A 3-0 week with wins over the Warriors and Spurs has helped them out in the latter category almost across the board, except Rotoworld, where they inexplicably fell a spot during a five-game win streak. Whatever, Rotoworld.
Donovan Mitchell scored 40 points for the second time this season Friday against the Suns. He is the fourth rookie with multiple 40-point games over the past 35 seasons, joining Michael Jordan (seven), Allen Iverson (five) and Blake Griffin (two). -- Jose De Leon
Donovan Mitchell has been fantastic this season and ever since Rudy Gobert came back the Jazz are rolling. However, with reports of Joe Johnson wanting out and Utah being open to moving Rodney Hood, there are opportunities to upgrade.
DeMarcus Cousins’ injury and Blake Griffin’s move to the Eastern Conference (along with the Nuggets’ tough February schedule) have provided the Jazz with an opportunity, and a five-game winning streak has them within 3 1/2 games of a playoff spot. The streak includes wins over Toronto, Golden State and San Antonio, and though it began with great defense, the offense had three of its seven most efficient games of the season last week. Shooting 57 percent against the Spurs’ second-ranked defense on the second game of a back-to-back on Saturday was particularly impressive. Ricky Rubio had 34 points in that one and has combined with Joe Ingles and Donovan Mitchell to shoot 42-for-74 (57 percent) over the course of the streak.
Back on January 22nd, the Jazz lost to the Hawks, dropping their record to 19-28. It looked like Utah season’s was circling the drain. However, since then, the Jazz have shockingly reeled off five straight wins, including beating the Raptors in Toronto, the Pistons in Detroit and the Spurs in San Antonio.
Two weeks ago, I wrote here that I was selling on this team and that they just kind of sucked. Well, I’m back in. What kind of fan would I be if I didn’t let them be top-10 after wins over Golden State and at San Antonio in the same week? A bad one. That’s what kind of fan.