EMPTYING THE NOGGIN—Lots of positives in Utah’s loss to the Spurs

  •  The Spurs are fabulous. This is a Spurs team hitting on all cylinders. They torched the Jazz, but it was still a night with a lot of positives.
  • This was without question the best offensive night of Derrick Favors’ career. He is beginning to get an array of moves and, moreover, is going somewhere with the ball and he is going where he wants to go. He hit a tough fadeaway on the baseline. He rolled to the middle on Duncan and scored a drew a foul. He retreated out of the post to set himself up for another play. This was a big night for Derrick. It’s going to be interesting to see how he plays tomorrow as he has not been able to link these games in the past.
  • Kanter and Favors got time together again tonight. They were -5 in their opening six minutes and all of San Antonio’s points were in the paint. In the third quarter they were +2 before Favors got his fourth foul.
  • Gordon Hayward had a very nice first half. His game earlier this year against the Spurs was one of the primary things that derailed him. The Spurs gave him the mid-range shot and he couldn’t make them. It sent him into a tailspin. Tonight he came with a plan and a held with the approach for all of the first half. He finished with 17 points, six rebounds and six assists. The six turnovers are too much. They are painful turnovers as well.
  • Alec is a bonafide scorer. Think DeMar DeRozan in Toronto. He didn’t get to the line tonight, but the Spurs don’t foul.
  • Trey is getting better every night. He has made huge strides. He got into the paint to make a play. He is finding some spots to make plays. He is shooting better. Lots of positives on Trey’s end.
  • This is why this night excited me. The Jazz have shown in the last three games that they have a lot of talent. Gordon is going to get better when he plays with better players and has to carry the team less often. Favors is coming around as an offensive player. Alec is a bonafide scorer. Trey is looking more and more like an NBA point guard. This is taking shape nicely. This is a big final 15-game stretch for them all to continue to grow and improve. The pieces are in place. They compliment each other for the most part. There are a lot of pieces here to play with for the coaches and management.
  • The Jazz made huge strides defensively, and that has completely fallen off. Coming into the game, teams are shooting 50% this month and 42% from 3-point range. Tonight the Spurs shot 63% and went 10-for-16 from 3-point range. That is incredible.
  • Three nights down on “March’s Murderers’ Row.” Tonight will be interesting because it is a back-to-back and I hope these guys fight. Hard to get hammered each night.  These are superior teams and the jazz have showed a lot of fight and played with them in a lot of phases of the game.