SAN FRANCISCO — The Utah Jazz lost to the Golden State Warriors 111-107 on Saturday night at Chase Center.
Once again the Jazz had a big lead and once again the Jazz let it slip away. This is a trend that we can’t ignore.
- It’s been noted a couple of times recently that Mike Conley, after a few games of really not looking like himself, has rounded back into form and seems like the Mike Conley that Jazz fans have come to love and rely on. Conley playing at a high-level, looking really comfortable, being in a great rhythm, and just overall making dudes sweat on the court is not something that the Jazz have head leading into the playoffs yet. The Jazz had new Conley, who was just barely finding his footing and then had to take a couple games off because of the birth of his third son in his first year with the Jazz. Then last year the Jazz had Conley nursing a hamstring injury leading up to the playoffs and then unable to help out through almost the entirety of the second round. This season (knock on wood) the Jazz have Conley who is peaking right at the perfect time. That could be a real difference maker for the Jazz when the postseason begins.
- It’s crazy to think that a guy who originally signed a 10-day contract to be a COVID-19 replacement player (Danuel House Jr.) and a guy who was seen as a throw-in in a trade (Juancho Hernangomez) are now so valuable for the Jazz. You could look at this a couple of different ways — 1: the Jazz so desperately needed help that even the dregs of the league are rotational pieces, or 2: which is the way I see it — the two guys that we’re talking about have really unique skill sets that just perfectly fit in with what the Jazz needed and also the Jazz’s coaching staff is smart in the way that it uses guys. House and Hernangomez have been incredible defensively for the Jazz and they add length that the Jazz didn’t have before they joined the team. Add that to the fact that they’ve been the Jazz’s best 3-point shooters since joining the team and you can’t really ask for more from them.
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- You guys, I’m running out of ways to say that the Jazz blew a huge lead and collapsed at the end of a game. I have to imagine this is how the players feel when we ask them what happened. How many more ways can they say that they aren’t focused and need to be more consistent and execute late.
- The Jazz had a 21-point lead in the first half and just like the other night against the Los Angeles Clippers, the Jazz had a 16 point lead in the fourth quarter, but were unable to maintain that lead. This is more than a trend — it’s a problem.
“The other night we played really well for three quarters, tonight we played well for 42 minutes. Some of the same things we’re working to overcome...the theme has to be that we play together, move the ball. We might not move it as much late, but we still need to move it.” — Jazz head coach Quin Snyder
- The kind of mistakes that the Jazz were making in the closing minutes were just wild. Turnover after turnover and throwing the ball out of bounds and airballing shots. These are the kinds of things that will give every opponent life and confidence and end up being what buries the Jazz. I don’t know if they can fix it. If they could play a game the way they played the first 40 minutes against the Warriors, then this Jazz team would be really great. But if they play the way they did through the last six minutes, this team isn’t going anywhere.
- Looks like Rudy Gay is out of the Jazz’s rotation. I thought that maybe Quin Snyder really was going to situationally switch between Gay and Hernangomez, but Gay got another DNP-CD tonight. Now, Snyder could change his mind in the future and maybe two games is not enough of a sample size to make any concrete determinations, but let’s say hypothetically that Gay is out for the foreseeable future. Who is it bad for? Obviously bad for Gay who would probably like to play. It’s also bad for the front office for making a deal with Gay that might pan out to mean nothing for the team, but at the same time getting Hernangomez who has been great is a positive mark for the Jazz brass. But this could be a good sign that Snyder is willing to make a tough roster/rotation decision that goes against the grain of what seniority would dictate or what would be expected. That’s where this isn’t bad and instead proves some flexibility.