|Field Goal %||.449||12||.441||18|
|3 – PT %||.370||8||.344||18|
Data is as of writing date of December 17, 2012
How they match up:
This Brooklyn team scares me just a bit. They aren’t in the realm of a New York or a Miami, but they are an athletic team that likes to get after it in front of their home crowd. Meanwhile, the Jazz just aren’t a stellar road team in terms of final results just yet. Overall, I feel the Jazz play pretty good defense on the road and have had a chance in most every road contest this year; they just can’t quite push it over the top. This is the beginning of the pre-Christmas 4-game road trip the team usually takes and all four games are in a back-to-back set. It will be a good chance for this team to regroup a bit after two disappointing losses this past weekend.
Quick note: Did you see Deron’s comments on ESPN about Utah vs. Brooklyn?
The catalyst is obviously Deron Williams. Without him, this team isn’t even close to this interesting. But as key as he is, Brook Lopez is the guy that matters most to this team. He recently sat out six games this month with a foot issues. In that time frame, the team lost the first five games before getting only a six point win over the Raptors. They averaged more points per game in that stretch, but they lacked the big man factor of knowing exactly who to go for when they needed a bucket. It will be up to Jazz big men (Al Jefferson, Derrick Favors, Enes Kanter) to stay in front of Lopez on defense and not allow him to dictate the flow of the game. Williams is too much for the Utah point guards to handle so the help will need to be there to keep him from penetrating the lane and trying to make Utah pay; there isn’t many athletes more dedicated to grinding a chip on their shoulder than Deron Williams.
Prediction: Jazz win a close one in Brooklyn, 98-94