EMPTYING THE NOGGIN—Favors and Burks lead the way

  • It is so nice to have Derrick Favors on the floor. Utah moved to 17-9 when playing a full roster. The Jazz’s rim protection tonight was much better than it has been, but the great thing tonight was that Favors was an offensive force. He hit two mid-range jumpers in the third quarter, and also hit a sick baseline turnaround jumper. This shot has not been falling for Favors—he is just 29% from mid-range this season—but if he can start to knock these down he can become a legitimate offensive player as well as a great defensive player. Favors’ value is real.
  • The Jazz did a better job of getting out in the open floor and hitting with some early chances tonight.
  • Marvin Williams had awesome energy, both offensively and on defense.
  • Hayward plays well with Favors. It’s no surprise that he had 10 assists tonight.
  • Corbin changed the rotation tonight and didn’t play Brandon Rush. He also played Kanter and Favors together for short spurts on the floor.
  • Burks is playing super basketball. Tonight he defended Rondo when Burke couldn’t get any stops. Burks has always been a good defender on the ball, particularly on the point guard. He’s getting better and better at getting off picks and staying on the ball. He’s getting better at staying with it for entire possessions. These are very important steps in his development. On the offensive side, not every drive is to the basket. Instead, he is finding people on the drive before it is do-or-die time. He is playing under control in a manner that allows his teammates to know where he is going and play off of him. These are very exciting things for Alec. 20 points a game over the last six games is nice, but these other issue are going to change him from a Jerryd Bayless type who doesn’t help you win to a complete player that helps put Ws on the board.
  • Jeremy Evans had a career-high four blocks.
  • Phil Johnson said on the air tonight that Enes Kanter will become a 3-point shooter in the NBA.
  • Solid win. Phoenix is next and then the road trip.