In their final preseason game the Utah Jazz will face the Dallas Mavericks, the team that helped end their latest chapter of basketball.
Both teams had an eventful summer. The Mavericks lost Jalen Brunson to the Knicks, while the Jazz spent all summer having the Knicks drool over a trade for Donovan Mitchell that would never come. Now, both teams are entering the season with different expectations. The Mavericks will be trying to find a way to replace the contributions from Bruson by committee. The good news for them is that they’ll be getting Tim Hardaway Jr. back, who can replace some of the offense from Brunson. The Mavericks will also have newly acquired Christian Wood and a lot of their season depends on how well he can acclimate.
For the Jazz, it’s looking like the first season of the rebuild is underway. Some in the media claimed the Jazz might be better than you think. That talk seems to have subsided when the Jazz lost to the Spurs by sizable margin in their last game. Without Mike Conley and Malik Beasley, this Jazz team will not be winning a lot of games.
But that doesn’t mean this season can’t be successful. In a way, the Jazz have jumpstarted their rebuild with the acquisition of rookies like Walker Kessler, Ochai Agbaji and even Simone Fontecchio. The only way this isn’t a success if the Jazz don’t successfully develop these players. For the most part we’ve seen some nice things from Kessler and Fontecchio, but it’s time that we saw more of Agbaji. If we don’t see him soon, I wouldn’t be surprised if Danny Ainge doesn’t make another move to clear space for him. The Jazz need to be bad and also develop their youth for when they bring in the potential cornerstone players over the next two seasons. Giving more time to the rookies will achieve both.
When: 7:00 PM MT
Where: Vivint Arena, Salt Lake City, UT
Radio: 97.5/1280 The Zone