Jazz Get Past Raptors With Huge 4th   Leave a comment

Yet again, the Jazz had a really bad quarter. This time, they changed things up though, playing solidly in the first before sucking it up in the 2nd. I guess that happens when you turn to your bench and bring in a line-up of Flop, Harding & Knight. Flop has to be the worst player in the league, or right up there. And that’s counting all 2nd-round rookies this year, and all NBDLers that have been called up and even Jason Hart. Harding has been sucking it up for the past couple of games, and that continued. Brevin brings a veteran presence that the team probably needs. He also brings a terrible jumper, overconfidence on his own jumper, the innate ability to cause the offense to stall immediately, and more. Combine the 3 of them with AK (who loves to drive into the post all wild-like and then dish off to Flop) and Korver, and you’re going to have a hell of a time. In a bad way. By the way… passing to Flop should be an offense punished by immediate benching. Luckily for the Jazz, AK & KK carried the Jazz bench, scoring all 38 of the bench points. The rest of the bench (aka the other 3 guys already mentioned) went 0-5 with 3 assists, 1 TO, 4 fouls and 0 points.

Fortunately for the Jazz, Deron, Okur & ‘Sap (getting another start for the Injury Magnet) played well, overcoming off nights from CJ & Brewer, and teaming with AK & KK to lead the Jazz. Deron had 25 & 9, taking over late yet again. Okur couldn’t drain a trey, but went 9-17 for 19 & 11. ‘Sap finished with 18 & 11. Brewer had only 4 points on 6 shots (though he did throw in 5 assists), and CJ had 5 on 5. Truthfully, the game was ugly throughout, before the Jazz finally woke up late. They outscored the Raptors 28-14 in the last quarter, largely due to playing D and having the Raptors miss their jumpers. It ended up being enough, as the Jazz got a road win, something that we’ll take no matter who we’re playing.

Meanwhile, for the Raptors… Chris Bosh had 30 points & 10 boards (before choking?). Jose Calderon had 10 & 11, Anthony Parker had 16 & 11, Bargnani had 20 and 8, and The Matrix was held to 8 & 8. By the way, the caption to the picture is kinda telling for the Raptors. As are the polling results on the home page.

Here’s how the Jazz extended their streak to 11 games.

I’m not a big fan of the bench, outside of the top 3 (top 2 if the Injury Magnet turns on). Well, I like The Koof, but he gets less time on the court than the guys making mid-court shots for money. And Fesenko & Almond, but they’re both in the D-League right now. That leaves the top 3, the next 3 (mentioned above), and Ronnie Price. If this team is really dependent on anyone behind the top 3 for production (which they are, especially with Injury Magnet out), they’re in trouble. If the Brev Brev/Price duo has to play more than 5 minutes (well, just Brev Brev because J-Slow all of a sudden hates Ronnie Price), they’re in trouble. If Flop hits the court, they’re in trouble (and my TV is off if the game is on, but that is irrelevant). If Harding gets called on in any game that isn’t against the Spurs/Nuggets/etc., they’re screwed. I know this is true for most teams beyond the first couple of guys, but given the way injuries are hitting, the Jazz have to be prepared. Turning to Flop & Harding does not equal prepared. If you enter a playoff series against the Lakers/Spurs, and put Flop on the court, you will be laughed out of the building. And eventually run out of it as well.

This whole spiel is probably irrelevant now, given that the big FAs (like Drew Gooden and Joe Smith and Mikki Moore, etc.) have all signed, and the deadline to add players that can play in the playoffs (or something like that) has passed, but still… how the team can leave Flop on the roster and not go try to get someone that can help is beyond me. Hopefully it doesn’t come back to bite us in the backside…

That said, the Jazz won. Guess we might as well enjoy that. The last 5-game-Eastern-Conference-road-swing is underway, and the Jazz have a 1-0 start. Things could definitely have been a lot worse… and it seemed like they would be until 12 PM MST, when they finally woke up (they = Deron, it seems). Up next… the Pacers.

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