The Jazz faced off against Phoenix Suns Monday and fell by a score of 117-103. It’s a tough loss for a Jazz team that met a Suns team without Kevin Durant, having lost six out of their last eight games. Utah has now lost four in a row and seems to skidding fast toward the end of this season. For fans who are happy to see the Jazz “tank”, the game went exactly as one could hope. The Jazz were in the game all the way until the start of the 4th quarter, and then the Suns, led by Devin Booker, overpowered the Jazz.
With the win, the Suns moved closer to not only securing a playoff berth but securing home-court advantage in the first round. The team has a tenuous hold on the 4th seed in the West with 7 games remaining. Phoenix now has two straight wins against quality teams even as star F Kevin Durant continues to be sidelined with a bad ankle. Phoenix was able to score with little resistance tonight, which is typical when Chris Paul is on target with his lethal mid-range game. The key for the Suns to win this game tonight turned out to be a strong bench performance, outscoring Utah 54-25.
Although the Jazz lost their 4th game in a row, they got a balanced performance from the starters tonight. Four out of five starters scored in double figures and they were lead by Markkanen with 25 points. The bench was lackluster tonight with Kris Dunn leading the way with just 9 points and 5 assists. Utah fell flat in the last period of the game, scoring just 22 points and turning the ball over 4 times.
In the end the Jazz are not as talented of a team from top to bottom as the Suns but at least they kept interesting for 3 quarters. The Suns are a great offensive team even without Kevin Durant, and the Jazz learned that tonight. Phoenix will return home to host the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday and the Jazz will head out on the road for three straight games starting with the San Antonio Spurs on Wednesday. GO JAZZ!!!