Jazz are a steamroller

Quin Snyder's men burst in the third quarter a game in which they scored 15 triples more than a totally soulless opponent.


Crossroads. The Jazz, a perfectly oiled machine for playing basketball, passed over the Pelicans, a machine? Imperfect from playing basketball? For the last year and a half (the arrival of Zion Williamson, the signing of David Griffin, the departure of Anthony Davis…) the Pelicans have been a very hype team. The Jazz, stable with Quin Snyder as (excellent) coach, no. His biggest successes have been the renovations of Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert. Few headlines, a lot of work. Or more lucid. Sure that the Pelicans also work, but ... it does not spread. They are 34-50 since the start of the 2019-20 season.

There are games in which strange things happen, in which the planned scripts are blown up. But there are others where exactly what you might expect happens. The Jazz led the NBA before hosting the Pelicans in triples per game (16.2) with a percentage of 42%. And the Pelicans were the worst in the defense of the shot of three: they receive 15.8 with a 42.3% accuracy. And the Jazz, of course, fried Louisiana on the outside: 21/47. Also, and to top it all, the Pelicans are a lousy team from the triple. This time they stayed at a 6/26. Fifteen difference, 45 points less there. Something that has happened to them three times already this season (five in total to the rest of all the franchises). The Pelicans are the worst team in history right now in difference between triples scored and conceded (-6.3): 128 scored, 210 conceded. The worst mark so far in a full season is 3.9 from the 2015-16 Bucks.

The matter is clear, and more in a League in which the shot of three weighs so much. The Pelicans don't travel much to the staff line either (10/15 this time), which is strange for the staff they have. Stan Van Gundy has not fixed the defense and is doing very little in an attack that ends up being very boring, highlights of Zion Williamson on the sidelines. The power forward (this time 32 points on 14/19 shooting) is ultra efficient but also monothematic (albeit spectacular) in his game. It does not elevate a team too much in which they seem to take turns attacking, as if they were catching the same time, with a Brandon Ingram who is less (17 points, 3 rebounds, 4 assists) and who gives the feeling that the rivals are catching the point with smaller but faster defenders that you can't outrun with your first step.

The rest is what it is: Steven Adams has improved the center position, Bledsoe has worsened the point guard / guard position with respect to Jrue Holiday and Lonzo Ball (7 points, 4 assists 0/6 in triples) is still in his maze: injuries and some good game between each batch of performances at best mediocre. Among the youngsters, Alexander-Walker alternately cools and warms up and leaves point guard Kira Lewis good. Willy Hernángomez could play this time for three minutes (2 points, 3 rebounds) for a team where nothing seems to be going well right now: after an initial 4-2 he is 5-8 (six defeats in seven games) .

In the Jazz, quite the opposite. Snyder's collective, sharp and intelligent style. A collection of fast passes and good shots to crown the excellent work that is done on defense. A formula already perfectly tested and that is pure effectiveness in Regular Season (the playofs are something else). At 10-4, they are second to the West, tied with the Clippers and half a game with the Lakers. They have six wins in a row and eight in 10 games (they started 2-2). Donovan Mitchell completely dominated (28 points, 4 assists, 9/15 shooting) a game in which Van Gundy tried to put zones simply so that the Jazz "did not score in every attack" of a third quarter that ended with a partial of 36 -twenty. Gobert added 13 points and 18 rebounds, Bogdanovic 11 points, Conley 10 assists and the second unit shone: Clarkson (18 + 6 + 6), Niang, Favors, Ingles ... a great team.

Photos from as.com
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