Utah Jazz: Can They Win it All This Season?
The Utah Jazz currently has the best record in the NBA at 27-9. They have won 8 of their last 12 games. They’ve gone on winning streaks at 11 back in January and also 9 in February. Overall they have won 21 of their last 26 games. They have also been nearly unbeatable at home with a 15-2 record. They are as hot as any team can be.
The question is will the Jazz stay hot and are they a serious contender not only in the Western Conference but overall to win the NBA championship.
I believe the Utah Jazz is a serious contender and will definitely not be surprised if they win it all. They have the talent, star power, and enough depth to make a lot of noise in the playoffs. They are well-coached under Quinn Snyder.
The Utah Jazz has two bona fide All-Stars in Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert. Mitchell is a shooting guard and is one of the best offensive players in the game. He is currently averaging 24.4 points per game, 4.6 rebounds, and 5.4 assists. He has averaged at least 20 points per game every season since he burst into the league in 2017. Mitchell is one of the most explosive players in the game with his athleticism. He can handle the ball and drive to the lane and finish with dunks or layups.
Mitchell has also improved his perimeter game, currently shooting a career-high 38% from three-point range. He will enter the 3 point contest during All-Star weekend this Sunday. That makes him even more unstoppable as a scorer. When Utah needs a go-to scorer down the stretch, Mitchell certainly fits that bill and is good as anyone out there. He can take over a game any time with his offensive gifts.
Center Rudy Gobert on the other hand, is a defensive force in the middle. He’s a former Defensive Player of the Year and he could possibly win that award again this year. Gobert is one of the best shot blockers in the game. He is currently second in that category with 2.8 blocks per game, trailing only Indiana Pacers center Myles Turner who is currently averaging 3.4 blocks per game. Gobert’s presence in the middle is a game-changer and makes opponents think twice about driving to the lane, knowing the standout from France is always there to contest it.
Gobert is also a great rebounder, currently averaging 13.2 boards per game. He’s third in that category right now. Offensively Gobert is not a 20 point scorer like teammate Mitchell consistently is. But he is currently averaging a double-double in points at 14.2. He gets most of his points around the basket inside. He usually gets in a good position to score down low with layups and dunks inside with his 7’1 frame.
But it’s not just those two All-Stars. The Utah Jazz, once again, has Mike Conley manning the point guard spot. Conley has been one of the most underrated point guards in the league. But recently the league has taken more notice of his prowess and he finally became an All-Star last season. Conley may not do anything flashy and but he is fundamentally sound and crafty. He is a lefty who can drive to the lane, get his teammates involved, and shoot from the perimeter as well. He is currently shooting a career-high 42% from downtown. Conley is a solid defender as well, averaging 1.5 steals.
Bojan Bogdanovic can also fill in offensively especially from the perimeter. He is averaging 15.7 points this season. he averaged 20.2 points last season. He is shooting 40.5% from three-point land and has been shooting at 40% at least from downtown in the last four seasons. Bogdanovic is also a terrific free throw shooter at 85% this season and has shot over 80% from the charity stripe every year of his NBA career.
Off the bench, the Utah Jazz has Jordan Clarkson who provides a spark offensively at 18.2 points. Joe Ingles provides another perimeter shooting threat, shooting an insane 46% from three-point land. Derrick Favors provides more size down low and can back up Gobert.
So the Utah Jazz is well-equipped talent-wise, to make a deep playoff run in the West. It won’t be easy. You got the two Los Angeles teams that can pose the biggest threat to Utah’s NBA Finals hope. If the Los Angeles Lakers get Anthony Davis back healthy, they will probably be the favorites again with him and LeBron James leading the way. The Los Angeles Clippers certainly have enough talent with Kawhi Leonard and Paul George.
The Phoenix Suns are currently 2nd in the West and have a rising star in Devin Booker and All-Star veteran point guard in Chris Paul. Then there are also other teams in the West in the San Antonio Spurs, Portland Trail Blazers, Denver Nuggets, and the Golden State Warriors who are definitely no pushovers.
The Utah Jazz has also failed to get past the second round in recent years and has not gotten past the first round in the last two seasons. So the pressure is on, to win a playoff series. But this is a different, better, and more confident Utah team that’s playing really well. With their one-two punch in Mitchell and Gobert, solid point guard play from Conley, outside shooting of Bogdanovic and Ingles, and plus scoring off the bench in Clarkson, it will not be shocking if the Jazz comes out on top.
What do you think? Do you think this is the year the Utah Jazz will finally get over the hump and represent the Western Conference? Leave a comment below.
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