The Jazz haven’t looked very good post All-Star break. Utah is 1-2 with both losses being by double-digits and the win was still a relatively uninspiring performance, especially considering the dominance this team showed the rest of February. But now March is here and the madness won’t be limited to college basketball.
I distinctly remember a time when Jazz fans were saying something to the effect of “Our wing depth is so bad we’re giving significant minutes to Joe Ingles.” Now, the 30-year-old Australian is a fixture of the team. He’s the “glue guy,” a fan favorite, and arguably just as much a face of the organization as Rudy Gobert or Donovan Mitchell.
ESPN’s Tim MacMahon wrote an article about “Average Joe Ingles” and how he is anything but average. One of the surprising parts of the article is when MacMahon mentions what Dennis Lindsey has said about Ingles.
“Jazz general manager Dennis Lindsey calls Ingles, a local cult hero of sorts who co-hosts a weekly radio show in Salt Lake City, one of the top 10 small forwards in the NBA.
“And he’s dead serious.
”’If you said that to the casual NBA observer, that would be heresy,” says Lindsey, who re-signed Ingles to a four-year, $52 million deal last summer. “But we know what we have.’”
When you first read it you might think, like I did, “there’s no way.” But then you realize you can’t name 10 small forwards better than Ingles. I’m not sure I can name five.
Statistics support the notion of Ingles being a top SF. ESPN’s real plus-minus pegs Average Joe at sixth among small forwards in both RPM and Wins (it might also be worth mentioning Royce O’Neale is 10th in RPM, which is ahead of Jayson Tatum)
Joe Ingles got a story in ESPN, but the self-proclaimed leader in sports has a bit of a love/hate relationship with Utah right now.
On the one hand, the Jazz are noteworthy right now with their recent win streak and exciting rookie(s). But on the other hand it’s Utah, which, is apparently a negative thing for ratings.
The four-letter network posted a video themed around the stars under the age of 25 and it was conspicuously missing a certain 21-year-old.
When was the last time the NBA had this level of young talent? pic.twitter.com/EseQJdVnGH— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) March 1, 2018
I’m not sure what more Mitchell needs to do to earn respect. He’s got two 40-point games and is leading not just all rookies in scoring but his own team. Maybe getting a triple-double will do the trick. Everyone seems to love those.
Somebody on the Jazz is a birthday boy! It’s Jonas Jerebko, who turns 31 today.
The Sweedish Sniper is the second-oldest player on the roster (Thabo Sefolosha is 33) but the oldest currently in the rotation. And they call Ingles as old man...
The recent success of the Jazz has not come without it’s price, literally. The Salt Lake Tribune recently reported that ticket prices for Jazz games has risen by two-thirds since the season began. But fans are paying no mind to the rise in prices because the product is worth the cost. Vivint Arena has sold out for Utah’s last 15 home games.
Along with ticket sales, jerseys — mostly #45 ones — have been flying off shelves.
Former Jazzman Corey Crowder will be in the house tonight when The Utah Jazz take on the Minnesota Timberwolves. Corey is the father of current Jazzman Jae Crowder, who is averaging 13.0 points per game in a Utah uniform.