The Utah Jazz lost a nail-biter to the Golden State Warriors, 119-116, on Monday night at Chase Center in San Francisco.

High and Low Notes

  • You might notice that the format is a little different here with the ‘High and Low Notes’ combined. That’s because there were so many good and not so good moments from this game that are connected and it seems like you deserve not to read these as separated thoughts. I’ll show you what I mean.
  • The night started out with Jordan Clarkson taking and missing a ton of shots, particularly 3-point shots. He went 0 of 8 from deep to start the game and the social media discourse regarding Clarkson was incredibly negative (that’s a low note). But at the same time he was playing really well at the rim and attacking Kevon Looney when he got a couple of early fouls (high note). I get that it’s hard to watch someone let the ball fly that often and not hit and wonder why the Jazz are playing that way, but Clarkson is such a fickle player. You hate when he’s missing shots but if he had made even three of those missed buckets most people would have been pretty happy about how he played and I doubt it very seriously that the Jazz staff wanted him to stop shooting. Then came the fourth quarter where Clarkson scored 24 of his 41 points (super high note and the most he’s had in a Jazz uniform and one point shy of his career-high), brought the Jazz  back from a double-digit deficit and would have been heralded as a clutch hero had the Jazz actually pulled out the win. There are going to be games where Donovan Mitchell, Bojan Bogdanovic, Jordan Clarkson and Joe Ingles (really, I could name every player) are not going to be as efficient as they normally are. That happens. But, Clarkson is not the type of player that you discourage. Because when he gets going, it’s usually in clumps and it pays off.

“That’s who he is. We know how he can get his shot and no matter if he is 0 for 10, he’ll keep shooting and that’s what we want from him. Especially right now when we have (Mitchell and Conley) out. A great game from his side. I mean, we were down 18 and he was really on fire in the fourth quarter. He got us back in the game.” — Bojan Bogdanovic

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  • The Jazz were not looking for Rudy Gobert in the first half even though he often had quite a mismatch. Him in the post would have been better than some of the tougher contested shots guys were taking. Some of that is guys just not looking for him but it’s also a function of the Jazz offense and from a lack of ball movement clogging the paint. It looked like the Jazz were making a concerted effort to start the second half to get Gobert involved in the offense, feeding him in three of the first four possessions. But then as the game continued his touches dried up again. It’s not like it’s a bad thing when Gobert doesn’t score a lot. The Jazz have plenty of players who can score, but there are missed opportunities on some of the nights when the Jazz are having some trouble shooting, as they were against the Warriors. All that being said, after settling in on the defensive end, the Jazz defended the Warriors pretty well through most of the night and Gobert was a huge part of that.
  • Royce O’Neale was guarding Stephen Curry better than a lot of other people would, and O’Neale also had some really nice offensive plays. It would be nice to see him drive to the rim or battle down low a little bit more, but obviously that’s not why he’s on the floor. But the need to have O’Neale on Curry left him unable to roam on some of the larger players like Draymond Green or Jordan Poole and Kent Bazemore. Yes, the Jazz have other players who need to defend but without Mike Conley and Donovan Mitchell to run around with Curry all night (and that’s a tall task) it does open things up for other players. I guarantee you that there wasn’t anyone that expected Poole and Bazemore to combine for 39 on Monday.

“I was really proud of the way we competed. I think that’s, to me, the overarching thing to take from this game and then... a couple things that we know we need to do to have that competitive effort turned into a win.” — Jazz head coach Quin Snyder

  • The Jazz had a lot of sloppy moments that can be cleaned up. They committed way too many live-ball turnovers against a team that absolutely murders in transition and then their transition defense was not nearly as good as it needed to be. That being said, they nearly won the game without two of their All-Stars and I think that’s a pretty good sign when you are going against the likes of Curry, who is playing at an MVP level this season. If the Jazz do in fact see this team in the first round, which is entirely possible, and the Jazz are at full strength, the Warriors are going to have to contend with a lot more and the Jazz were already able to put up 116 points on them.
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“When you turnover the ball it’s tough to play defense, especially against this kind of team when you have Steph Curry shooting from everywhere basically. That was probably the reason why we lost the game. It’s not about our offense, I think we did a great job, we scored (116) points, so I don’t think that it’s our offense.” — Bojan Bogdanovic

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