EMPTYING THE NOGGIN – Jazz win opener v. Dallas

Emptying the Noggin
• Solid opening night win for the Jazz. Played a tired short handed team and took it to them and didn’t relent when they got the run going. The 3rd quarter close of 18-2 run was awesome. Mo drained three’s and the Jazz defense created for the offense and the Mavericks couldn’t stop the run.

• The Jazz first half defense was awful. They made adjustments and got on top of Collison pick and roll penetration and started closing out on the three point shooters. After allowing the Mavericks to hit 10 three pointers in 16 attempts in the 1st half the Mavericks attempted only 1 three pointer in the 3rd quarter.

• The combination of Kanter, Favors, Millsap and Jeffferson is insanely relentless on the board and on the interior. Three Jazz players had 10 plus rebounds. Millsap had 13 rebounds in the 1st half and Jefferson got 9 in the 2nd half. Plus, Favors had 7 in the 2nd half. It is an endless run of bigs and then the added three point shooting is a nasty combo

• Mo Williams got hot and carried the team offensively on his own 8-0 run in the middle of the 3rd quarter. He has that ability to spark this team

• Jazz balance was awesome tonight – 6 guys in double figures. Mo and Marvin lead the way with 21 points. On the writer roundtable we talked about who was going to lead this team in scoring this year and we all said Jefferson but my point was he will lead the team in less than 40 nights this year.

• I have Jazz offensive efficiency at 116 pts per 100 possessions and defensive rating at 93.4 – both of are great.

• The other area where the balance was very impressive was the 24 assists with 4 players getting 3 or more and 7 players with 2 or more.

• Jazz took 42 free throws and took 14 three point shots.

• Add 10 steals and 8 blocks and you have an all around great night

• Alec Burks didn’t get in the rotation tonight. Corbin and I talked before the game and he said he doesn’t want Burks out of the rotation but he also doesn’t think he can go with an 11 man rotation. Corbin went with Tinsley as the back up point and then Foye plays the back up and two. I understand the love for Burks and the desire for him to develop but Corbin wants to win games and he thinks this is the best approach at this point in the season to have a true point guard and a strong outside shooter in Foye who had 13 points and went 2 for 4 from three.

• One note on all of this discussion. There is a chance that Foye could be a better player than Burks and could be forever. Foye is not old he could have a future with the Jazz for the next 4 to 6 years as well.

• This is going to be an on-going conversation every night until injuries happen. These things play themselves out but their will certainly be a lot of discussion.

• Bottom line, about as good an opener as you could ask for. Now onto the road and let’s see how this team plays on the road.