UTAH JAZZ CENTRAL
All updates and perspectives courtesy of Michael Sorensen
BREAKING NEWS (4/15/21) - Former NBA All-Star and MVP Dwayne Wade has purchased an ownership stake in the Utah Jazz, per Adrian Wojnarowski. It is unclear what % of the Jazz he will own and what his specific role will be with the Utah, but Wade plans to take an "active part" in the Jazz organization and franchise. More updates to come.
Game Recap (Thunder vs. Jazz 4/13/21) - Yes, Lu Dort just dropped a career-high 42 points on the Jazz. Yes, Moses Brown grabbed 15 rebounds. Thankfully, it didn't matter as the Jazz were able to overcome a slow start against the OKC Thunder, 106-96. With Royce O'Neale, Joe Ingles, and Jordan Clarkson all out with injuries, the Jazz needed someone to step up to alleviate the loss of three key rotational players. Bojan Bogdanovic and Donovan Mitchell answered the call, dropping 23 and 22 points respectively. Coming off a season-high 33 points against the Wizards, Bogey went a perfect 10-10 from the charity stripe. Georges Niang also had himself a nice game in his first start of the season for the Jazz as he knocked down six 3-pointers. Gobert was in DPOY form, putting up 13 points, 14 rebounds, and adding 7 blocks on the defensive end, helping hold the Thunder to just 38% shooting from the field. Dort and the Thunder looked unstoppable in the 1st quarter, but the Jazz took over the 2nd and 3rd quarters to get their 25th win at home. The Jazz look to close out this four game home stand with a W when the face the Indiana Pacers in a matinee game this Friday at 1:00 p.m. MST on NBATV.
Game Recap (Wizards vs. Jazz 4/12/21) - Well, so much for the 24 home game winning streak :(. The 4th quarter comeback fell just short as the Jazz fall to the Washington Wizards 125-121 for their first home loss since New Years Eve. Donovan Mitchell has been on a tear the past 4 games putting up 41, 37, 42, and adding 42 tonight for Utah. Maybe it's time we put his name the MVP discussion? Washington outscored the Jazz 37-23 in the 2nd quarter and held a solid lead the rest of the game until the Jazz came back and made it interesting late in the 4th quarter. The dynamic backcourt of Russell Westbrook and Bradley Beal did their thing as Westbrook posted his 23rd triple-double of the season as Beal added 34 points on 14-31 shooting from the field. With Mike Conley and Jordan Clarkson out with injuries, the Jazz had to go a little deeper in their bench than they would have wanted. The Wizard's bench held their own with 59 points while the Jazz could only muster 14 points from the bench. It's good to see Bojan back to his usual ways as he dropped 33 points and was lethal from 3, going 6-10. The Jazz look to bounce back at home tomorrow night as the OKC Thunder are in town. Tipoff is set for 7:00 p.m. MST.
Game Recap (Jazz vs. Trailblazers 4/8/2021) - With the two best 3 point shooting teams in the NBA going head-t0-head tonight, one would expect to see a bunch of 3s going in. Well, not so much. Both teams shot below 29% from beyond the arc and struggled to get into their usual offensive rhythms. Luckily for the Jazz, they happen to have a player named Donovan Mitchell, who just 24 hours prior dropped 41 in a loss to the Suns and dropped a cool 37 points tonight on 14-25 shooting from the field in a 122-103 win against the Portland Trailblazers. Rudy Gobert was his usual self as well, dominating the boards with 21 rebounds and contributing 18 points as well as being a defensive beast in the paint. Quin Snyder must have said something after the Jazz were manhandled in the rebound game against the Suns because they came out and out-rebounded Portland, 58-41. The Trailblazers were led by their dynamic duo in the backcourt of Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum, who dropped 23 and 19 respectively. It was a tight game until the Jazz blew open the doors in the 2nd half, winning the 3rd quarter 40-19. The Jazz continue to add to their home winning streak, as they are up to 23 consecutive wins at home, with their last home loss coming back in December. The Jazz will stay in Salt Lake City to go up against the Sacramento Kings on Saturday at 7:00 p.m. MST.
Game Recap (Jazz vs. Suns 4/7/2021) - In a nationally televised game on ESPN, Donovan Mitchell and Devin Booker showed out tonight and proved why they are 2 of the best young players in the NBA. The game was back and forth the whole way with Mitchell and Booker seemingly trading buckets the whole game. The Suns ultimately came out on top in overtime, 117-113. The MVP of the game, however, was Chris Paul, who showed why he is getting paid the big bucks. Paul was a true team player, finishing with 29 points and 9 assists. His patented mid-range shot was unstoppable and the Jazz had no answer. Booker was spotty tonight, going 0-6 from beyond the arc, but he finished with 35 points. Mitchell channeled his bubble playoff performance, putting up 41 points, and carried a Jazz team that continues to struggle from 3, going 11-44 (25%). The Suns also dominated the boards tonight, finishing with 61, compared to the 45 from the Jazz. The Jazz have now lost the last 2 games in a row and are only a 1.5 game ahead of the Suns in the Western Conference. The Jazz will look to bounce back tomorrow night against the Portland Trailblazers at 8:00 p.m. in Salt Lake City.
Game Recap (Jazz vs. Mavericks 4/5/2021) - The Jazz couldn't find their usual shooting stroke as they fell to the Dallas Mavericks, 111-103. The Jazz struggled from 3 as they were only 12-44 (27%) from beyond the arc. Mike Conley was the only bright spot offensively for the Jazz as he put up a team high 28 points and dished out 7 assists. Luka Doncic worked his magic and Utah's defense as he put up 31 points, 9 rebounds, and 8 assists along with 23 points from Dorian Finney-Smith. It was just one of those nights where nothing was falling. The final score is not indicative of the game, as the Mavs were firing on all cylinders. The Mavs put an end to the Jazz's 9 game winning streak, but Utah remains the best team in the NBA with a record of 38-12. The Jazz will stay on the road and face a hot Phoenix Suns team Wednesday at 8:00 p.m. MST.