March Madness. My favorite sporting event of the year. There are few things I look forward to with as much excitement and anticipation as the first two weekends of the NCAA tournament. The upsets. The Cinderella’s, The Madness! Just last year brought some amazing storylines like UMBC busting brackets as a #16 seed and Loyola Chicago making a Final Four run. I cannot wait to see what this year’s tournament brings us (GO AGGIES!).
Currently riding a 4 game winning streak, the late-season winning has only begun. I mean just look at this through the rest of March:
- 3/20 At New York Knicks
- 3/21 At Atlanta Hawks
- 3/23 At Chicago Bulls
- 3/25 Vs. Phoenix Suns
- 3/27 Vs. Los Angelas Lakers
- 3/29 vs. Washington Wizards
That looks like a 10 game winning streak just waiting to happen! If the Jazz were able to run the table there, they could find themselves knocking on the door for home court advantage in the first round. You have to believe they’d carry that momentum and be the dark horse team no one wants to touch in the playoffs.
They’ve got the look of a scary tournament team too.
Rudy Gobert is out there having flu games now and has averaged 16.7 points, 13.2 rebounds, and 2.8 blocks since mid-January. He’s finding his playoff form and will be influencing every single possession he’s on the court.
Donovan Mitchell is that star guard that can carry you deep in the tournament. And he’s only getting better. Since his prophetic New Years Eve tweet, he’s averaging 27.1 points, 4.6 rebounds, 4.9 assists and shooting 39% from 3!
Joe Ingles. Don’t even get me started. He's that perfect glue guy that can just kill you on the offensive end. Since February 1 he’s up to almost 39% from 3 and 7 assists a game. He’ll know how to pick apart a defense over a 7 game series.
And then there’s Derrick Favors. That almost-silent role player that can explode for big games when he’s needed. He’s quietly having the best seasons of his career with career bests in Offensive Rating 123 (!), Defensive Rating of 103, BPM (4.3), TS% (61.9), and WS/48 (.210). You know he won’t go down quietly!
What storyline would make the Utah Jazz the darlings of March (and April) in the NBA? What do you most want to see to end the season?