About a week ago we noticed that Utah Jazz guard Gordon Hayward was having a remarkable season. As a Jazz player he was going to join a very exclusive club of NBA players who finished a season with averages of 15.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 5.0 apg, and 1.5 spg. If you look at his averages right now, he's there, and some. He has played in 75 games this season, and the Jazz have 2 more left on schedule.
The bad news is that if he elects to PLAY in those games, life becomes a little harder for him.
Let's take stock of where he is right now, and where he needs to be.
Okay, he's got the points and assists already completed. He just needs to worry about rebounds and blocks in these next two games, if he is probably listening to his agent who ALREADY knows what I'm about to tell you. (And yes, his people watch his stats a lot closer than I watch his stats.) So Gordon needs 10 rebounds in two games, but also needs to go and get himself 7 steals. His asking price as a restricted free agent could get a big boost if he does.
How likely is it to happen?
Well. Over the last five games he is averaging 15.8 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 4.4 apg, and 1.4 spg. He's going to have to step it up because if he plays to his average he'll get 8.8 rebounds instead of 10.0, and 2.8 rebounds, instead of 7.0.
|vs NOP||@ GSW||vs DAL||vs POR||@ DEN||Total||Avg|
It's not impossible for him to get 10 rebounds in 2 games. That's just five per game, and that's his average for the season. It's the steals which will be very hard to get. It's just a nice number, but the steals aren't that big of a deal in the big picture, it's just makes it easier for his negotiators.
It's almost BETTER for the Jazz for him to a) not make it into that elite group, or b) just have Gordon sit out, because that ensures two more wins. We have all been told about how great a competitor Hayward is, so it's unlikely that he'll sit out. It's also unlikely that he'll rack up 7 steals against the Lakers and Timberwolves. So what's the downside? Well, he'll still be the first person on the 15/5/5/1 list in Jazz history not named Pete Maravich. So that's good company to keep. It's just not going to be as "awesome" as 1.5 spg. If Gordon does get 4 steals and plays in the next two games he'll finish with 1.47 spg. Which is pretty close if you ask me.
Regardless of what happens for our player's individual statistics in the next two games, I just hope we lose them both. And that will take a team effort. And team goals are supposed to be worth more than individual ones. The Utah Jazz have never won the draft lottery, and never had a #1 draft pick. If they did they would make franchise history. And that is history that will mean more going forward than a guy being in the same group of players as LeBron James, Scottie Pippen, Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, and so forth . . . right?Johnson, Larry Bird,