The first few weeks of the NBA season saw Utah Jazz fans, media and others close to the team uttering the same phrase with minor variations.
“When _______, the Jazz are going to be scary good.”
Well, that time is essentially now. Having orchestrated a four-game win streak and a run of seven wins in nine outings, the Jazz are rounding into form early in the season even against a tougher schedule.
Utah currently sits in second place in the Western Conference and owns the third best record in the league of 8-3 behind the Boston Celtics (8-1) and LA Lakers (8-2). This despite having the third-hardest strength of schedule according to Basketball reference.
In the four games since Utah’s last loss we’ve seen a squad capable of running teams out of the building (like Golden State), battle through the clutch and get a win on the final play against the best of the best (Milwaukee Bucks), and rally from a slow start to get a win regardless of what happened earlier on the night (Brooklyn Nets).
Obviously, to say this team is perfect or is playing perfect with no room to improve is ludicrous. But there should be no argument that this is the best Jazz team we’ve seen in a while. A side capable of winning in multiple ways in varying scenarios.
Utah’s stars are all performing at high levels. In the four-game streak, Donovan Mitchell, Bojan Bogdanovic, Mike Conley and Rudy Gobert have taken turns leading the team to victory with box score breaking numbers.
Jazz stars in the last 4 games
For once in a lifetime, fan expectations and media hype are actually being lived up to in Utah. The anticipated explosion of Donovan with space to work in is a reality with Spida posting career highs in points (25.1), rebounds (5.2) field goal percentage (48.4), 3-point percentage (40.8), free throw attempts and makes (4.4/5.5), and is just 0.1 assists per game off his career high in that category.
There’s plenty more that could be said with Bogdanovic being a dream signing, averaging just shy of 20 points per game, Conley rolling into form in November and Gobert getting involved in the offense.
The season is very, very far from over and any number of things could go wrong. But there is also plenty that can and hopefully will improve as time goes on.