EMPTYING THE NOGGIN – Good team win and High Quadrant 3

• This was a good team win tonight. A good team should take it to the Suns and that is exactly what the Jazz did tonight. The game was never in doubt. The Jazz dictated how the game was played.

• The Jazz have been a dominating defensive team since Favors returned to the lineup in late August and even better recently. The one area where the Jazz have not been as solid has been road defense but looking at how the Jazz played on the road at Minnesota and tonight and you can see the Jazz making huge strides at road defense.

• The second quarter was incredible defensively. The Suns scored a field goal at the 10:39 mark and then made two free throws at the 7:59 mark and didn’t make another shot until the :59 mark of the 2nd quarter. This span was over 19 possessions. The suns scored once in 1 in 19 possessions and missed 14 straight shots in the middle. This is dominance

• Jazz offense couldn’t make a shot early. Rodney Hood got wide open looks and they didn’t fall. The trailed after 1 but they were controlling how the game was played. It was just a question of getting the ball to go in the cylinder.

• Jazz hit 10 threes. The Jazz have won 10 of their last 13 and in all of the game have at least 8 three pointers.

• Jazz only had 10 turnovers tonight. Mack committed just 1. Ever since his meeting with Quin he has taken care of the ball at a very high level.

• Trey Lyles is an incredible offensive player. His off the bench scoring is changing games. His ability to stay on balance is what makes him elite. The added above the break three makes him potent and makes the Jazz offense completely different.

• Out of timeout tonight, the Jazz ran a 4/5 pick and roll with Lyles as the ball hander and Favors the big. Lyles told us after the game that Quin called the play and told Lyles to handle.

• Having a big guy that makes a high quadrant three is a game changer. It forces the other big out on the floor. it opens up many more driving lanes than a big shooting a corner 3 and it makes it impossible for a team to keep their big at the rim. Think of Boris Diaw and Matt Bonner in San Antonio or Chaning Frye. Those big have changed offensives because of the above the break 3. Add in the aspect that Lyles can not only make that shot, but that he can play off the bounce and he can pass and this is an incredibly special offensive player that is going to change the Jazz offensively.

• Incredible that Lyles was there at 12. This year’s draft class is going to be great, but in 5 years the Lyles pick is going to be talked about with the Hood and the Gobert picks.

• Derrick Favors really gamed it tonight. Everytime he check in the game he looked really stiff and as though the knee was giving him a hard time.

• On TIP OFF I talked about the bell curve of players. Gordon Hawyard’s bell curve is pretty awesome. He notched another 22 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assist night like it was nothing. He was the best player on the floor for periods of time

• Trevor Booker was a big impact tonight. Quin is using him terrifically right now.

• Exciting times for a Jazz fan. The team is getting better. Battling some big time names and teams in Dallas and Houston for a playoff spot while being the least experienced team in the NBA. How fun.

EMPTYING THE NOGGIN – Solid win lead by the Defense

• Solid win without Favors for the Jazz tonight. The Jazz were a step off early in the night. The 50/50 balls were going to Minnesota, the defense just wasn’t as sharp early but by the end of the night the Jazz re-established who they are and ran away with the win.

• A huge part of the game plan was to keep the Wolves off the line and out of the paint. The Jazz held the Wolves to a season low free throw attempts and free throw makes.

• Wolves are one of the worst three point shooting teams and strangely don’t take them very often. In the first half tonight they hit 7 on 12 attempts. They were unable to maintain this outlier performance and in the 2nd half were 2 of 11

• Trey Lyles started in place of the injured Derrick Favors. Lyles had 17 points in the first half and scored in a completely different array of ways. He missed his opening shot but his supreme confidence carried him to a great first half.

• Jeff Withey got a little run tonight and played really well. He bothered Towns and protected the rim.

• Jazz defense continues to be great. They held the Wolves to 85 points a team that has been clicking well over 105 points a game since LaVine went to the starting lineup as a shooting guard. They held the Wolves to 44% and forced 15 turnovers. These are consistent with everything the Jazz have been doing defensively.

• In the first half 50/50 balls were all going to Minnesota in the 2nd half the Jazz got those plays.

• When the jazz hold opponents under 90 points they are 26-0.

• Only 2 of the last 12 opponents have scored 100 points on the Jazz and the Warriors wouldn’t have done it if the game hadn’t gone to overtime.

• Hood has linked 4 really strong game together, he was 7 of 10 tonight. Hayward was solid again with 22-5-3.

• Ever since Quin and Shelvin Mack sat down about the turnover issue he has kept them much more under control. He had 17 n 3 games and since then he has had 10 in 4 games. He added 5 assist tonight.

• Solid win. Keep beating the team the Jazz are supposed to and they make the playoffs.