The Utah Jazz handled business against the San Antonio Spurs on Monday in impressive fashion considering that the team had been struggling with offensive firepower except for the game against the Sacramento Kings last week. It will be tough for the Jazz to beat the Spurs twice in a row however as the Spurs have lost four in a row and are looking to make sure that they hold on to the last play in spot for the playoffs with 8 games to play.
The Jazz come into this game wounded again with Donovan Mitchell and Mike Conley out with injury. Although they have had some limited success without those two, they cannot hope to go anywhere in the playoffs without both players being healthy. The silver lining to this recent stretch is that Bojan Bogdanovic has seemingly regained his confidence and is coming into tonight’s game averaging just over 26 points per game in the last four and is showing more confidence with all aspects of his game, especially going to the basket.
The San Antonio Spurs come into this game in desperate need of a win if they want to avoid the prospect of falling to 11th in the Western conference. The Spurs lead the New Orleans Pelicans by 3 games in the loss column and they hold the tiebreak in the season series but they can’t afford to lose many games with how competitive the west can be. The loss on Monday to the Jazz puts the Spurs at 5-5 in their last ten games and they have now lost 4 in a row. Although it was a double digit loss to the Jazz on Monday, the Spurs showed life in the second half of the game and coach Gregg Poppovich will no doubt be expecting his players to put forth a better effort for all 48 minutes of this game.
The Jazz have to pick up the win tonight if they want to keep hope alive for securing the number one seed. I am sure that is not the first thing the team cares about, with Donovan Mitchell likely nearing a return it is important that they win games like this so that they can regain the identity that they had earlier this season and start gelling just in time for the playoffs.
What to watch for:
The only thing that Jazz fans will probably be watching during the game tonight is to see if the Phoenix Suns lose to the Atlanta Hawks. The Suns won an overtime game against the Cavs last night and their stars played some heavy minutes. Even though the Suns are playing well, there is a good chance that they could lose tonight to the up and coming Hawks, which would give the Jazz sole possession of first place in the West again.
When: 7PM MDT
Where: Vivint Arena, Salt Lake City, UT
TV: NBA TV, ATT SportsNet
Radio: 97.5 FM/1280 AM The Zone