The Utah Jazz have won 11 straight and swept their six-game home stand with a 120-101 win over the Dallas Mavericks on Friday.
- I guess it would be a little irresponsible of me to just write “Jazz defense” and “Jazz offense” as the high notes. I’ll elaborate, but just know they looked really good.
- The Jazz had already amassed a 26-point lead in the first quarter. The first. And, if I’m being honest it wasn’t the prettiest offensive quarter they’ve had — there were some missed shots and a few broken plays — but the Jazz continued to create open looks while Joe Ingles and Jordan Clarkson were extremely aggressive.
- Ingles passed John Stockton to become the all-time leader in franchise history in made 3-pointers with the Jazz.
- The Mavericks made multiple pushes, or attempts at pushes, but the Jazz’s defense was smothering and the score was out of reach. Even when the Mavericks made one final push at the end of the game it wasn’t like there was any fear that the Jazz were going to let them get back into it. That’s actually how good this Jazz team is right now; they nearly turned it completely off for the first half of the fourth quarter and then decided to put the game away.
- Juwan Morgan and Miye Oni got some extra playing time on Friday, as they did on Wednesday, because Donovan Mitchell (concussion protocol) and Derrick Favors (sore lower back) were not playing. They made the absolute most out of their time. For guys who barely get playing time, they’re so ready when they come in and both are really prideful and locked in on the defensive end.
“That’s just a testament to those guys and how ready they are. They work very hard every day there, some of the first people in the gym working and then leaving late, constantly going over plays and they know when their number’s called coach has full confidence in them just as the rest of our team does.” — Mike Conley on Juwan Morgan and Miye Oni
- Morgan finished the night with a career-high 12 points, including two 3s, to go with five rebounds. Oni had a stretch where he had three offensive rebounds in a stretch of just a couple minutes and continues to impress with his athleticism and skill on defense.
- Bojan Bogdanovic had a game-high 32 points on 10-of-16 shooting overall and 7-of-11 from deep. Friday was the first time that Bogdanovic really seemed like himself and looked relaxed on the court. He was letting the game come to him and wasn’t forcing shots. He looked fluid and natural, and it was a really good thing to see.
- There was really so much to like out of this game like Mike Conley’s 22 points and nine assists, or Rudy Gobert’s 17-point, 12-rebound performance that included him making 7 of 8 free throws, or Ingles once again being aggressive from beyond the arc. Jazz fans should be very happy.
“The whole staff they do a good job of preparing us for every game and we’ve got guys on our team who carry around iPads for the majority of the day prior to coming in here to play the game. So we’re really locked in on our assignments and what we need to do individually, and as a team. When guys are bought in that like that, and their abilities are like that, the game is the easy part.” — Mike Conley
- Less than two minutes into the third quarter, Kristaps Porzingis had more fouls (5) than he had points (3) or rebounds (3). That is not the stat line a starter — or really anyone — wants in a basketball game.
- Speaking of Porzingis, he is a really bad passer. I’ve never paid much attention to his passing, especially when watching the Mavericks because they have Luka Doncic who is one of the best playmakers in the league, but I paid attention on Friday and he telegraphs passes like he wants the nonexistent fans in the upper bowl to be able to see who he plans on passing to.
- Morgan played an amazing game, but he also fouled out with a little under two minutes left in the game. He’s still a pretty raw player and that’s going to happen when you don’t get a lot of playing time so it’s not terrible, especially in a blowout, but it’s worth noting.
- Early in the fourth quarter, Gobert pump-faked while in the left corner and there was a split second where everyone in the building thought he was going to shoot a 3. He did not, but I wish he had. When you’re leading by 25 points in the fourth quarter you can do that! I think we all deserve to see it happen.
- OK, I know that I noted above how great it is that the Jazz were able to basically fall asleep for half a quarter and then turn it on and close out the Mavs. But they missed a really great opportunity for their starters to rest for nearly the entire fourth quarter. There are some things that you can do that you shouldn’t do, and the Jazz shouldn’t have let the Mavericks think they had a chance.