Who: Utah Jazz vs Charlotte Bobcats
What: NBA Basketball – Jazz Home Game
When: 9:00 PM ET
Where: Live at EnergySolutions Arena
|Utah||31-27||103.7 (10)||104.6 (23)||93.9 (17)|
|Charlotte||13-44||97.9 (29)||108.4 (29)||94.4 (14)|
Utah: Paul Millsap (Questionable)
Charlotte: Tyrus Thomas (Inactive)
|PG||Earl Watson||Kemba Walker|
|SG||Randy Foye||Gerald Henderson|
|SF||Marvin Williams||Michael Kidd-Gilchrist|
|PF||Derrick Favors||Byron Mullens|
|C||Al Jefferson||Bismack Biyombo|
|6th Man||Gordon Hayward||Ramon Sessions|
1- STATS: Charlotte allowed Utah to beat them in a multitude of ways in the first meeting this season — Hayward and Tinsley were a combined 7-11 (63.6%) from 3, while Jefferson and Millsap were a combined 19-27 from the field for 45 points. The Bobcats can’t afford to get beat from the inside and out again tonight, so what adjustments are necessary?
Spencer: Well, for starters, you have to at least make the Jazz make contested jump shots. In the first meeting it was obvious that Charlotte was keyed in on helping down on Millsap/Jefferson (didn’t work either) and left shooters for wide open 3’s all night. Biz needs to not let Jefferson make him look like a fool once again- be physical with him and don’t go for his ball fakes! Expect to see more Jeff Adrien than usual if Millsap plays.
Bobcats simply need to do a better job of playing man-to-man defense and worry less about their over-helping style of team D- by that, I mean keeping their man in front and contesting every shot with a purpose. Bad defense really just comes down to an effort standpoint, and there’s no real metric for that.
Mathew: Concentrate on the bigs. Hayward is certainly a capable shooter, but I would rather take my chances with him on the perimeter than giving Jefferson and Co. room to operate on the inside. Hopefully the Bobcats elect to throw some different looks at the Utah bigs when they catch it in the post.
2- HENDO O/U: Since the all-star break Gerald Henderson is averaging 17.8 PPG & 5.4 RPG. Over/under on those numbers tonight and why?
Spencer: I’ll take the over. Hendo will have a smaller Randy Foye guarding him tonight and this makes the vaunted mid-range jumper deadlier. I also just believe that Hendo is in somewhat of a groove right now, so look for him to continue to success tonight. Not sure it’ll be enough to win the game, but you’ve got to take what you can get with this squad.
Mathew: Under. Utah is not a stout defensive outfit (23rd in Defensive Efficiency), but I’m counting on a bit of a regression to the mean. A jump in playing time has helped Henderson increase his output since the break, but he’s also been converting at an eFG% of 50% – which while encouraging, is probably unsustainable given Henderson’s track record.
3- PICK IT: Will Utah sweep the Bobcats on the season and end their 3-game slide tonight, or do the Cats’ get the split with Utah on the season?
Spencer: Jazz. If Millsap doesn’t play then I’ll give the Cats’ at least a chance to win, but if he’s a go- no chance. Charlotte doesn’t do well against teams with offensively focused front courts, so no reason to believe that ends tonight. 100-90 Jazz.
Mathew: Jazz. Utah is one of the most difficult places to play in the League and the Jazz are desperate for a win as the hard charging Lakers (though the Jazz do currently remain in the 7thspot above the Houston Rockets) close in on the last remaining playoff spot. I think the Jazz right the ship tonight versus the Bobcats.