The Utah Jazz is heading into 2024 with a little wind in their sails as they have won 4 out of the last 5 games. They will hope to continue the good play against the Dallas Mavericks to open the new year. The Mavericks are a have hit a bit of a rough patch in their last ten games as they have gone 4-6, but they are a very good team and a very dangerous team. Especially with do-it-all superstar Luka Doncic leading the way. For whatever reason, the Jazz seem to have an extra amount of trouble trying to contain Doncic whenever these two teams match up as he burned the Jazz for a 40-point triple double in the first half alone about a month ago. Utah is playing much better now, and it will be interesting to see if they can make it more a game this time around.
Dallas has been on the road a lot in the last few weeks and will surely be looking forward to getting back home to start a 7 game homestand on Wednesday. But starting the year off right with a win in Utah would be a nice way to end their recent struggles on a positive note. Dallas comes into this game 19-14 and are in 6th place in the Western Conference. They got a boost in their last game against Golden State after Doncic returned from a one game absence to lead them to victory. The Mavs are only 3 games back from the #3 seed and if they can remain relatively healthy then they should be in prime position to make a run in the next month or two. Dallas will need great play from everyone as they will be without the services of Kyrie Irving(heel), Maxi Kleber(toe) and Seth Curry(illness).
Utah comes into this game looking to continue their climb up the Western Conference standings. After an impressive win against a good Miami Heat team, the Jazz have a record of 14-19, and are 4 games back of the final play in spot. A win against Dallas would go a long way in building the confidence of this team considering they have struggled against the good teams in the west this year. If the Jazz are going to make any New Year resolutions it would be to start playing better defense and Dallas with Luka Doncic is a great place to start. The key for Utah in this game will be to limit Doncic and to limit turnovers, the Mavs are 7th in the league on points off turnovers.
This will be a hard-fought game. Tough game for the Mavericks because they are road weary and it is always tough to play at the Delta Center, and tough for Utah because Dallas is better than average and always seem to have Utah’s number. Let’s hope that the Jazz can get the new year started right and get the victory in what should be an exciting holiday game, GO JAZZ!!
When: Monday, January 1st, 7:00 PM MT
Where: Delta Center, Salt Lake City, Utah
TV/Streaming: Jazz+, KJZZ
Radio: KSL 1160 AM & 102.7 FM
It looks like the Jazz have a clean injury report (up to the writing of this article) but the Dallas Mavericks look like they have more players possibly out.
Dallas Mavericks Injury Report vs. Utah Jazz:— Grant Afseth (@GrantAfseth) January 1, 2024
Luka Doncic - questionable (left quad soreness)
Kyrie Irving - questionable (right heel contusion)
Dante Exum - questionable (right heel contusion)
Seth Curry - questionable (illness)
Maxi Kleber - out (right small toe dislocation)…
This is the first time in 12 games that Kyrie Irving has been upgraded to questionable, so it seems likely they will play. We’ll find out closer to game time if Doncic and Irving play.