Utah Jazz at Oklahoma City Thunder: Keys to close out the road trip with a win

SALT LAKE CITY, UT - OCTOBER 21: Ricky Rubio #3 of the Utah Jazz and Alex Abrines #8 of the Oklahoma City Thunder talk after the game on October 21, 2017 at Vivint Smart Home Arena in Salt Lake City, Utah. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2017 NBAE (Photo by David Sherman/NBAE via Getty Images)
SALT LAKE CITY, UT - OCTOBER 21: Ricky Rubio #3 of the Utah Jazz and Alex Abrines #8 of the Oklahoma City Thunder talk after the game on October 21, 2017 at Vivint Smart Home Arena in Salt Lake City, Utah. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2017 NBAE (Photo by David Sherman/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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BOSTON, MA – DECEMBER 15: Rodney Hood #5 of the Utah Jazz gestures during the game against the Boston Celtics at TD Garden on December 15, 2017 in Boston, Massachusetts. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Omar Rawlings/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA – DECEMBER 15: Rodney Hood #5 of the Utah Jazz gestures during the game against the Boston Celtics at TD Garden on December 15, 2017 in Boston, Massachusetts. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Omar Rawlings/Getty Images) /

Key #2 – Find their shot from three

The Utah Jazz are currently the third most accurate team in the league from behind the three-point arc at 38.8 percent. However, you wouldn’t know that to be the case based on their performance on Monday against the Houston Rockets or their two contests against the Oklahoma City Thunder this year.

Ironically enough, the Jazz shot just 31 percent from three in their win over the Thunder and 33.3 percent in the loss. And in their most recent contest against Houston, the Jazz shot an even worse 29.6 percent. Meanwhile, the Oklahoma City Thunder are just 26th in the league in three-point percentage at 34.8 percent, so it’s been far from a strong suit for them.

In Utah’s most recent defeat at the hands of the Thunder, there’s almost no questioning that they would have come out on top had they just been able to sink a few more of their deep balls. Instead, their shot wavered, and on a night where OKC shot just 22.2 percent from behind the arc, they were still able to come out on top.

Although it’s been admittedly surprising, Utah’s three-point shooting has become one of the team’s most valuable offensive weapons. Therefore, if they’re truly to find a way to beat an improving Thunder team, it will be critical that they capitalize in that area while forcing OKC to continue to struggle with their three-ball. Otherwise, it’s quite likely that the Thunder’s offense will be able to once again power itself past the Jazz as it did in their last meeting.