Weekly Recap: Salt Lake City Stars Struggle in five game Losing Streak

Weekly Recap: Salt Lake City Stars Struggle in five game Losing Streak

by Elliott Cox

After securing their first win of the season against the Iowa Wolves, the Stars went into this week with a little momentum and hoped to get themselves back into the playoff picture. The week could’ve gone a lot better to say the least. The Stars are on another losing streak. They have lost to the Memphis Hustle, Agua Caliente Clippers, Raptors 905, Santa Cruz Warriors, and the Canton Charge this past week. The Stars are now 1-7 in the Orlando Bubble, and playoff hopes look very slim unless they somehow win out.

Defensive Woes

The Stars have been one of the worst teams in the bubble defensively, an interesting trend considering their NBA counterpart is known for its defense. The Stars’ are the worst team at getting defensive boards, they are in last place by 2.5 rebounds on average, and average less than 30 defensive rebounds a game. Their defensive rating is thirteenth in the league, out of 18 teams.

Offensive Inconsistency

The Stars have had only two games this year where they have reached triple digits. Part of the reason for this is that the Stars have the second worst shooting percentage in the bubble, as a team only averaging 40.8 percent shooting from the field. They are also shooting below 30 percent from three-point range as a team, and thus their offensive rating is lowest in the G-League by a wide margin.

Call-Up Watch

Yogi Ferrell continues to be a bright spot for the Stars this season. The fifth year Guard averaged 17.6 points-per-game this past week. Ferrell has continued to make his case for a call-up all season long, not only scoring the ball but distributing the ball well too. Through eight games, Ferrell is averaging just shy of four assists a game. All of this, while shooting a very efficient 47 percent from the field. ESPN has him as one of their call up watches as a result and I have to agree with them, the Jazz should be giving this guy a shot soon.

Ferrell hasn’t been alone in making an impression. Marcus Graves had a great shooting week in spite of the losing streak. The guard averaged 10.8 points per game this past week, shooting 56.4 percent from the field and 52.6 percent from three-point distance. The highlight was Sunday as he scored a season high 19 points, making seven shots on ten attempts. Graves has really made his shooting prowess known. The Jazz may look at him as a catch-and-shoot option to have off the bench if they elect to call him up.

Another player who stepped up this week was Tyler Bey. The Dallas Mavericks second round Pick broke out with two games scoring over 20 points. He averaged 17 per game this past week. He also picked up 42 boards across the five games, averaging 8.4 rebounds a game. He also had two double-doubles this week. Bey has really established himself these last few games, and should be someone the Mavericks will be calling up to the main roster in the next couple of weeks.

Coming this week

The Stars take on the Austin Spurs tomorrow at 9 AM MST, then have back to back games on Thursday and Friday, taking on the Westchester Knicks Thursday at 5:30 PM, and then the G-League Ignite Friday at 1 PM. The Stars close out the week on Sunday when they take on the Houston Rockets’ affiliate Rio Grande Valley Vipers at 1:30 PM. All games will be on ESPN+, except the game against the Ignite, which will be broadcast nationally on ESPN2.

(Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

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