Analysis: Despite huge fourth quarters from Jordan Clarkson and Mike Conley, Jazz fall to Suns again
The Jazz lost to the Suns, 105-97, Wednesday night. It was the Jazz’s third consecutive loss and the ninth in the last 11 games.
The Utah Jazz lost to the Phoenix Suns, 105-97, on Wednesday night at Vivint Arena. It was the Jazz’s third consecutive loss and the ninth in the last 11 games.
The Jazz trailed by as many as 21 points in the first quarter and clawed their way back to within a single possession, but were unable to complete the comeback in the end as the Suns walked away with their 8th straight win.
- Mike Conley and Jordan Clarkson did everything within their power to bring the Jazz back into this one. Clarkson shot 6 of 12 from 3-point range and led the Jazz with 26 points (hh scored 16 in the fourth quarter alone). Conley scored nine of his 16 points in the fourth quarter and had already racked up nine of his 10 assists before the final period began. It’s hard to imagine the two of them doing anything more than what they already did, especially Conley, who looked more emotional and fired up than I can remember seeing him in a Jazz uniform.
- Again there were some really nice things from bench players like Trent Forrest and Eric Paschall, who continue to provide sparks of defensive intensity and toughness when the Jazz definitely need it.
- Through the second, third and most of the fourth quarter, the Jazz put up a really valiant effort and fought their tails off against the No. 1 team in the league. And the Jazz did it without their two best players on the floor. Clearly there are some good things to be taken away from those minutes and from what the team was able to accomplish when it put its head down and got to work.
- Devin Booker made some absolutely ridiculously tough shots in the fourth quarter and put up 43 points. Definitely not a high note for the Jazz, but you have to give credit where it’s due and it is due for Booker.
- Forrest stepped on a referee’s foot in the fourth quarter and limped off the floor. The Jazz said that after he got his right ankle re-taped that he was available to return to the game, but he was obviously in some amount of pain.
- The Jazz had a really good chance to get back into this game and they were knocking at the Suns’ door when Hassan Whiteside got called for a really obvious offensive foul. He then took umbrage with the call and earned a technical foul to boot. It completely took the wind out of the Jazz’s sails in the final minutes of the game.
- No matter how much this team fights and claws and scratches, it’s hard not to see all the areas in which they would be playing better if they had their two best players on the floor. Things are not easy without Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert, and what they do for the Jazz just can’t be replicated or made up for. The Jazz need them.
- The Jazz were down 21 points in the first quarter. Sure, there were missed shots but there’s not really a great way to excuse getting down that much over only a 12 minute span. The Jazz made a ton of mistakes, including allowing Booker to go off for 21 points alone in the opening period. It’s really impressive to come back from that, but the problem is that they got themselves in that situation in the first place.