Daily Dribble: Utah Jazz get hot in Big Apple vs Knicks

Daily Dribble: Utah Jazz get hot in Big Apple vs Knicks

by Kimya Oliver

The Utah Jazz defeated the New York Knicks 108-93.

The Crossover: Utah Jazz by the Numbers

The Jazz came out hot by hitting three shots from beyond the arc. The Knicks gained offensive momentum and obtained a 19-13 lead.

The Knicks hit two consecutive three-pointers late in the first quarter, but Donovan Mitchell answered back by driving to the basket for the tough layup. With less than 30 seconds left on the clock, Jordan Clarkson pulled up from deep to close the first quarter for the Jazz trailing 31-26.

Off a bad pass, Jared Butler grabbed the steal and threw it ahead to Rudy Gay for the slam dunk. Mitchell continued to get hot from beyond the arc, sinking a step back three to extend the Jazz lead to 51-40. The Jazz closed the first half leading 60-53.

The third quarter started slow for the Jazz as they did not score for the first three minutes. Mitchell drove to the basket and missed the hook shot, but Gobert was there for the dunk to clean up the missed shot. The Jazz opened the quarter on a 10-5 run. Gobert ended the quarter making all four free throws and the Jazz held onto a 85-73 lead.

Mitchell made the first eight points to open the final quarter of play. The Jazz held onto the lead until the end of the ball game.

The Daily Double Double

Mitchell led the Jazz with 36 points and Clarkson finished with 23 points. Rudy Gobert finished just shy of a double-double with nine rebounds and 14 points.

The Jazz had multiple injuries in the lineup. Udoka Uzbuike was out due to a right ankle sprain, Bojan Bogdanovic was out due to a left calf strain, Mike Conley was out due to a right knee injury, Trent Forrest was out due to a right wrist sprain, and Danuel House Jr. was out due to a bruised bone in his left knee.

Kimya’s Take

To start out the game, I think the Jazz defense was not the best. The Knicks were shooting over 55.6 percent from the field and 70 percent from beyond the arc with less than two minutes left in the first quarter. The Jazz can’t allow opponents to score easily like they are playing open gym at a 24-hour fitness. This is especially true when opening the ball game.

After the first quarter, I think the Jazz did a great job turning themselves around. Clarkson stepped up when he was needed the most. He ended the first half with 18 points. Clarkson getting hot from beyond the arc is what the Jazz needed to gain offensive momentum when closing the first half. Also, Mitchell matched Clarkson with 18 points. These two easily can be a deadly duo when they get hot.

No disrespect is intended for Joe Ingles, but after he was traded to the Portland Trailblazers I think the Jazz have gotten better. The Jazz have more length by adding Juancho Hernangomez and Nickeil Alexander-Walker. Hernangomez ended with seven points and Alexander-Walker ended with no points, but both played solid minutes for the Jazz. Defensively, the Jazz can use their long arms. Hernangomez has a seven foot wingspan and Alexander-Walker has a wingspan just over six feet nine inches. Closing out space on a defender can turn a game around quickly when it matters.

With defense being highlighted, Gobert stopped Julius Randle tonight by holding him to 13 points: 28.6 percent from the field and 16.7 percent from beyond the arc. Randle leads the Knicks with 20.4 points per game, 10 rebounds per game, and 5.2 assists per game. Gobert showed in this game why he is a three time defensive player of the year. He and Whiteside led the Jazz to a season high 11 blocks as a team.

Bounce Pass: Up Next

The Jazz will be facing Kevin Durant and the Brooklyn Nets on March 21 at 5:30 p.m. MST. The game will be broadcast on NBA TV.

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