It was decidedly not the best way Utah needed to complete its four-games-in-eight-days journey. A number of gamers dressed quietly postgame, then slipped out of the locker room with out uttering a phrase. Joe Ingles mentioned he had nothing to say and stalked off.
Nonetheless, a minimum of just a few have been capable of finding some perspective after finishing their first multi-game journey of the season Three-1.
“You may’t win all of ’em, although we wish to. Three out of 4 — we’ll take it each time,” mentioned ahead Jae Crowder. “You gotta study from the nice and study from the unhealthy. We’ll positively attempt to study from this and transfer ahead.”
OK, so let’s begin with the nice, then.
First off, the Jazz confirmed their offense is usually a power. Whereas the journey began off with a meager 100-point effort towards the Rockets, that was adopted with a season-high 132 vs. the Pelicans, then 113 towards the Mavericks, and 125 vs. the T-wolves.
Donovan Mitchell scored 20-plus factors in every of the 4 video games. Rudy Gobert completed the journey with three straight video games of a minimum of 20 factors and 10 rebounds.
Additional, the supporting solid demonstrated it may be a significant factor of the offense. Crowder and Dante Exum had 18 and 14 factors, respectively, in Minnesota. Georges Niang and Grayson Allen had essential stretches vs. Dallas with 13 and 11.
“Our bench is sweet after they assume collectively, and that was what occurred towards Dallas,” coach Quin Snyder mentioned earlier than Wednesday’s journey finale in Minneapolis. “We obtained an amazing effort ’trigger they approached it as ‘us’ and never as ‘me.’ That’s one of many issues that continues to get solidified.”
Ricky Rubio, in the meantime, mentioned the gamers’ familiarity with each other is a serious power.
“It’s the start of the season, however we all know one another, so we simply have to select it up a bit bit,” he mentioned. “It feels prefer it’s the center of the season already and it’s solely the primary couple weeks, simply because we all know one another rather well and we choose issues up actually fast and we’ve obtained actually good gamers.”
That one’s fairly easy, actually — nobody is proud of the place the group’s protection is.
After beginning the journey robust by permitting simply 89 factors to the (admittedly short-handed) Rockets, the Jazz subsequently surrendered 111 to the Anthony Davis-less Pelicans, 104 to the Dirk Nowitzki-less Mavericks, and 128 to the (additionally short-handed) Wolves.
There have been robust stretches, however completely too many lulls. Perimeter defenders are getting hung up on screens and blown by far too usually. And when Gobert is off the ground, opponents drive the lane with impunity. That was particularly obvious vs. Minnesota when the middle was whistled for a pair of doubtful first-quarter fouls.
“We talked about how we wish to make our mark with our protection, and [Wednesday] we weren’t ready to do this,” Snyder mentioned after the loss to the Wolves. “We weren’t in a position to get stops. That’s what value us the sport.”
Gobert added that Utah has the potential to be an excellent group, however that it should regain its defensive id so as to take action.
“We are able to management our future. After we begin a sport the best manner, often it ends the best manner,” he mentioned. “We’re a defensive-minded group, and we should always always remember that. It doesn’t matter who we play — we should always by no means surrender 128 factors.”
Sure, the journey concluded with disappointment. However the coach is hopeful that his group will have the ability to channel that into one thing productive.
“It’s clearly tougher once you lose, however perhaps simpler to get higher,” Snyder mentioned. “That’s what we have to do with this, and that’s what we should always take with us. There’s a whole lot of issues we have to do higher.”
“I adore it right here — only a nice ambiance and an amazing group guys who come collectively to win,” he mentioned. “I feel we’re constructing one thing particular.”