Every Friday Utah Jazz radio voice David Locke stops by and visits with David James and PK on home of the Utah Jazz 97.5 FM
Utah Jazz radio voice and Jazz NBA Insider David Locke gives you the NBA 5 and then digs deep on the Jazz and the Kanter future
Eyes have been glued to every Dante Exum move, Rudy Gobert has become must watch on the defensive end and Gordon Hayward has proven he can be a star in the NBA. In the midst of all those story lines this year , the quiet kid from Atlanta, Georgia has calmly taken an enormous jump as a player.
In 4 of the last 5 games Derrick Favors has notched a 20 point, 10 rebound game. He has scored 20 points or more in more games this year than he did the entire year last year. He is shooting a career high 55.5%. His scoring jump over the last three years is 9.4 to 13.3 to 16.2. The list continues, career high in assists, free throws attempts, offensive rebounds and lowest turnover per game since his rookie year.
Numerous factors have come together for Favors to make this step. He is a starter for the 2ndyearbuilding off last year’s 73 starts. His weight training work with Mark McKown has been consistent and the dividends are showing. Favors spent hours on end in the off-season working on his mid-range jump. Finally, the new offensive system has moved where Favors is making his plays on the court. Put all of these together in the same stew and a star is emerging in Derrick Favors.
The biggest change of all for Favors is where he is getting the basketball. In the previous offensive system Favors got the ball primarily on the left block. This year he is playing off the elbows more than he has in the past. This allows him to attack from the top or in angle right or angle left.
Compare the shot distribution charts of Favors last year compared to this year.
2013-14 SEASON SHOT DISTRIBUTION
Notice a year ago Favors used 11% of his possessions on the left block last year and this year it is down to 5.9%. It is clear where those possessions have gone. Rather than using 7% of his possession around the free throw line he is using nearly 15% of his possessions from straight away.
By coming from the top Favors has been able to use his quickness rather than his power. He is able to see more of the floor and from where the defenders are converging on him. Think of how the Suns used Amare Stoudamire with Steve Nash in Phoenix.
His effectiveness has changed as well. The strength work has made him a force around the rim. In the chart below you can see he has jumped from 65.5% at the rim to an impressive 72.2%. Of players who take 5 shots or more in the restricted area per game, Favors is 4thbest in the NBA behind DeAndre Jordan, Anthony Davis and Tyson Chandler.
Lastly, this summer Favors stayed in Salt Lake City and lived in the gym. Each day he worked on his jump shot. He told me the #1 area of focus was balance on this jump shot. The work has given Favors an element to his game he never had previously.
|YEAR||Mid Range FG%|
|14-15||40% (45 fgm)|
|13-14||31% (54 fgm)|
|12-13||31% (36 fgm)|
|11-12||29% (21 fgm)|
|10-11||29% (21 fgm)|
More impressive is what Favors is doing from 15 feet and out.
|YEAR||15 Feet+ Shooting|
|14-15||44% (32 fgm)|
|13-14||28% (24 fgm)|
|12-13||23% (17 fgm)|
|11-12||23% (7 fgm)|
|10-11||24% (10 fgm)|
At just 23 years old there is likely more to come for Favors. Each night he is having a larger and larger impact on games. Who defends him is having less impact on how he performs. Maybe most importantly, his effort level has become consistent each night.
This is all part of the process. One of the most commonly heard things from Dennis Lindsey is the Jazz are not going to skip steps. Derrick Favors might be the best example of player going step by step through the development and beginning to come out the other side.
Utah Jazz radio voice and Jazz NBA Insider David Locke in his daily podcast gives you the NBA 5, then digs deep on Derrick Favors development
Utah Jazz radio voice and Jazz NBA Insider David Locke gives you the daily podcast starting with the NBA 5 then digging deep on Derrick Favors play and Warriors gorgeous offense
EMPTYING THE NOGGIN
- Before the game talking with the Warrior people talked about how they just put together 6 or 7 minutes and then run away from opponents. That is exactly what happened tonight. The Jazz kept the Warriors in the half court and held them to 41 points for the first 21 minutes of the game. In the next 15 minutes the Warriors scored 56 points. It was incredible. They hit 8 three pointers in the third quarter. Once the Warriors get the bounce in their step no one has figured out how to stop it.
- Derrick Favors was fabulous tonight. This was the best array of offensive moves I have seen from Favors. He hit the jumper, he rolled to the middle, he dropped baseline and this was against one of the best rim protectors in the NBA. Favors has put together 4 20 point 10 rebound games in his last 5 games. He is playing like a beast.
- Rudy Gobert came off the bench tonight. When he was on the floor the Warriors shot 26/63 for 41%. However, that is a bit misleading because in the 4th quarter without Curry, Thomspon or Green playing a single minute the Warriors shot 6 of 24 which skewed the numbers. Prior to the 4ththe Warriors were shooting 20 of 39 from the floor. However, the other side of the equation is clear the Warriors shot 71% with Gobert off the floor.
- However, the Jazz offense shot 62% with Gobert off the floor and 40% with him on the floor.
- Enes Kanter had 13 points and 10 rebounds and continued his assault on the offensive glass with 5 offensive rebounds. However, he had 0 assists and is not doing a lot to make his teammates better. His plus minus tonight was not good.
- The Jazz defended well in the first half. They kept the ball on one side of the floor most of the time. They generally kept the Warriors in a half court game and they had good pick up points to prevent easy early three’s. Then the Warriors hit their rhythm and it was over.
- Trey Burke had his 5thstraight strong game.
- Steph Curry is just terrific. He is the MVP in a talent laden league. He has worked so hard on his ball handling and is in complete control of the game. 27 points, 11 assists on 16 shots in 29 minutes. Wow.
- The Jazz had a big focus on Klay Thompson tonight and they took him out of the game a bit. He only got 8 shots off. Joe Ingles had the assignment and did it well.
- Warriors third quarter had an efg% of 77
- Dante Exum needs to play harder. I am sure he is fatigued but he needs to assert himself on the game a bit more. He needs to challenge himself to be better and to learn how to play every moment. In Australia, he didn’t need to play every minute. Here he does and we can’t afford him to get bad habits.
- The Warriors are the best in the NBA. They are playing at near Chicago Bulls 72 win levels. It is really awesome. The Jazz lost by 11 and that is what the average is. Nothing about tonight changed how I look at the Jazz over the last 14 games. They are playing so much better and are engaged at a higher level and making huge progress.
Utah Jazz radio voice and Jazz NBA Insider David Lokce gives you the NBA 5, looks at incredible line-up data for the Warriors and a Jazz history lesson