EMPTYING THE NOGGIN – Jazz wrap up road trip with solid win in Atlanta

• Super win for the Jazz in Atlanta. That is not one you project to get when the season starts. Everything was different with Rudy and Rodney back on the floor. Lots of guys made big plays. A year ago Jazz were in the same situation at the same point of the season and collapsed. Tonight, they made just enough plays to win the game.

• Alec Burks is making terrific progress. He made numerous plays this whole trip that he didn’t make two weeks ago. Tonight, he had a touch pass to Trey for a three. Late in the game he brought the ball up and got trapped on a few plays and calmly reacted correctly by making the pass to Favors after brining the defenders with him. He was in control and read the situation correctly. One more than one of his drives he decided prior to catching the ball and was able to get to the rim with more alacrity and increases his finishing rate.

• Derrick Favors from the free throw for the biggest shot of the night. He also dominated Millsap in the post. On defense he got switched a ton of times and was able to control the situation. He is having a monster season. The free throw line jumper is vital for the teams success and he is taking it with confidence and making it with regularity. At some point teams will close and then he swings through and drives to the basket. In addition, his passing on the short role has been terrific. Favors skill development over the past two years is remarkable.

• The coaches made some nice adjustments at halftime. The Jazz were getting trapped on every pick and roll and then the Hawks would then jump the next pass forcing the only pass to be over the top of the defense which was leading to turnovers. 14 in the first half . In the second half they slipped the pick man so it made it harder for the Hawks to trap and the Jazz only had 6 turnovers in the entire half.

• Rudy Gobert makes a world of difference. He alters how every thing happens on the floor and he is getting better as a roll man when teams leave him. He made some plays around the basket tonight. First double double of the year for Rudy.

• Hawks ran a nice play to get Horford the corner 3 and then they got a great look to win it but Millsap just missed. The back pick came on Derrick and Rudy did the right thing to switch on millsap but somehow he got spun around and Millsap was wide open. Paul just missed and the Jazz win.

• Trey Burkes decision making was terrific in the first half of the game. He is having a great start to the season.

• Jazz went Triple Wing for the final 9 minutes of the game and it allowed them to switch everything defensively. Jazz switched 1-4 and that took away a lot of what the Hawks wanted to accomplish. The Jazz played the triple wing a combined 14 mimutes tonight. One interesting moment was when it forced Coach Bud to take Korver of the floor because he couldn’t hide him defensively with Hood, Burks and Hayward on the floor. Hood really took it to Korver.

• Korver only got free for 1 really good look three. Korver only got 3 attempts from 3.

• Jeff Teague not playing changed what the Hawks offense was able to do.

• Rodney Hood took 9 threes. I can’t emphasize how important this is for the Jazz. High volume three point shooters are still one of the most underrated aspects of the game. JJ Reddick, Wesley Mathews, etc are incredibly important to an offense.

• Gordon is off and the first half was a big a struggle for him as I have seen in a long time but going through my Hawks notes from last year both games against the Hawks last year were struggles as well. The Hawks are not going to let Gordon be a play maker.

• 5 minutes left Jazz were up 3. Jazz shot 5 for 9 with 1 turnover. Really solid late game play.

• Nice win. Coming out of this 10 game stretch 5-5 is solid. Nothing we have seen yet should concern Jazz fans about this team. They are continuing the process and are improving

EMPTYING THE NOGGIN – Gone in a hurry

• This one was over in a hurry. Favors checked out of the game with 2 fouls and the score was Magic 6-2. Jazz hadn’t started well not scoring on their first 7 possessions of the night but when Favors went out of the game it all fell apart. In a span of 150 seconds it was a 12 point game, in 5 minutes it was an 18 point game and by the end of the quarter it had been 20 and in reality was over.

• This was going to be a tough task for the Jazz without Rudy and Rodney tonight. The offense didn’t start well. The opening possessions were Favors turnover, Hayward missed layup, Favors missed 10 foot turnaround, Burks no from 20, turnover, Favors miss from 18 and Hayward turnover.

• Sometimes nights like this give opportunity and it did tonight for Jeff Withey. Withey was not in the rotation and even without Gobert on the floor was not getting minutes. Tonight he got 24 minutes scored 8 points and had 7 rebounds. Of course, he also had 2 block shots because that is what Jeff Withey does, he blocks shots.

• Derrick Favors never got back in the flow of the game. The 2 fouls zapped him of any rhythm. He ended up only playing 19 minutes

• The Jazz went on a 19-2 run that made it looked more respectable and was good for Neto and Lyles to get some run and look more comfortable, but it wasn’t impactful on the outcome of the game. Neto and Lyles have both been playing tight so it was a nice chance for them to get out and run and just play for a little while.

• Trevor Booker had 4 steals tonight and brought his usual activity. He is unfortunately really struggling around the rim. Tonight he finished 3 for 9. He has dug himself a little shooting percentage hole – 27.7% shooting. This is going to take a little time to climb back out of.

• A few guys have some numbers as we pass by 10% of the season that are tough to swallow. Gordon has slide under 40% shooting, Neto is at 29%, Booker is aforementioned, Lyles is at 27%

• Alec Burks just didn’t have his legs tonight. He finished 2 for 13.

• The Jazz were making the right pass early in the game and finding guys on the extra pass but they couldn’t knock down the shot. The focus has been on making the extra pass and they did it time and time again but they could get it to go.

• I like Orlando. Scott Skiles teams play defense. They may be better without Oladipo. He is a negative offensive player and by taking him out of the line-up they didn’t have a dual negative backcourt with Payton and Oladipo.

• Orlando has a lot of athletes and they clamp down on the middle of the floor. The Jazz would drive to the basket and nothing was there. Jazz shot 21 of 49 in the paint. The perimeter pressure was intense. They denied the wing pass but the Jazz couldn’t get backdoor. Skiles teams play defense.

• Orlando will be in the run for a playoff spot in the East. The East is going to be really interesting with 5 teams battling for 2 spots with Boston, Milwaukee, Orlando, New York and Indiana.

• The schedule maker and the injuries got the Jazz on this trip. Nothing that is going on should shatter your belief or change how you feel about this team.