Utah Jazz at Philadelphia 76ers: Keys to keep momentum rolling

PHILADELPHIA, PA - NOVEMBER 18: (EDITOR'S NOTE: This image was created using a variable plane lens.) Joel Embiid
PHILADELPHIA, PA - NOVEMBER 18: (EDITOR'S NOTE: This image was created using a variable plane lens.) Joel Embiid /
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Key #1 – Stop the deep ball

Despite the absence of Joel Embiid and a poor shooting night from Ben Simmons in the Sixers’ first bout with the Jazz this season, Philly was still able to thoroughly dominate the Jazz thanks to an incredible shooting night from behind the arc. Dario Saric led the charge first and foremost as he logged an astounding 25 points on 5-of-9 shooting from deep, but he had plenty of help as well.

J.J. Redick went 3-of-7 and Robert Covington went 3-of-5 as the Sixers went on to log a 44.4 percent shooting night from the three-point line. The Jazz, meanwhile, shot a dismal 23.1 percent from deep so that discrepancy obviously made a huge difference in the Utah loss.

Although the 44.4 percent mark from deep was exceptionally high for Philadelphia, they are still undoubtedly a good three-point shooting team (37.4 percent, ninth in the league) so the Jazz will have to be more prepared to defend them in that area. Part of the reason why the Sixers thrived from behind the arc was that the Jazz gave them several wide open looks and failed to contest effectively.

Although it was Saric who murdered the Jazz in the first meeting, he’s actually shooting just 34.7 percent from three, meaning that if the Jazz will simply make it a point to get a hand in his face, they should be able to stop them. The guy that really is a concern is Robert Covington who’s absolutely lighting the nets on fire so far this year, draining threes at a 49.1 percent clip on 7.5 attempts per game.

That percentage is good for sixth in the league, but it’s also far and above the most attempts of any player in the top 20 in three-point percentage save Klay Thompson who comes in at number 20 and has hoisted 10 more total threes than Covington. Make no mistake about it, Covington and his Sixers teammates will look to once again punish Utah from deep and if left unchecked in that area, there’s little hope that the Jazz will have the firepower to overcome them.