The Utah Jazz couldn’t hang with the Brooklyn Nets in the second half of Monday’s matchup and fell short after a furious rally in the fourth quarter. It’s not so much that the Jazz played badly as the Nets are just so hard to stop when they are playing well. That’s no surprise considering that one of the best players in the world plays for the Nets and he can drop 37 points in a game like it’s easy. It’s hard from a fan perspective to see your team lose and realize that it’s no surprise and they probably should have lost. Not everyone on the Jazz played well tonight though with Rudy Gobert having a rough game and the Jazz getting practically nothing from anybody else not named Jordan Clarkson.
What more can you say about the Nets other than Kevin Durant. Say what you want about his surly attitude or his odd disrespect of Rudy Gobert during all-star selections, but that man can flat out ball. He nearly had a triple-double in this game so he does more than just score, but scoring is his specialty and when his team needs a bucket it’s virtually guaranteed that he is going to get it. The Nets were clicking as team tonight too with 45 field goals on 31 assists, lead by Durant with 8. That was the key to the game for the Nets tonight; they made it hard for the Jazz to get stops and play with energy on both sides of the ball.
Kudos to the Jazz for keeping the game within striking distance and giving themselves a chance at the end. Donovan Mitchell, although inefficient, kept the Jazz in the game during certain stretches and poured in 30 points. Mike “crossover” Conley lead the team with 7 assists and Jordan Clarkson chipped in 19 points off the bench. Everyone else on the team had a pretty rough night. Gobert was limited to 4 rebounds in 30 minutes and looked a step slow all night long. The key for the Jazz tonight was the way that they fell apart in the third quarter and were outscored 38-24. Games like this are frustrating because for 3 out of the 4 quarters the Jazz did play decent and who knows what would have happened in the fourth if the Jazz had kept the game closer. But as the old saying goes “coulda, woulda, shoulda”, you can’t have lapses like that against a team like the Nets.
With only 10 games left for each team, the Nets travel to Memphis for a Wednesday night tilt that could end up helping Utah. The Jazz will travel to Boston for game number 3 of their 6 game road trip on Wednesday.