Game Thread: Utah Jazz must contain The Unicorn on back-to-back

Coming off a thrilling win in Houston against the Rockets, the Utah Jazz are now in Dallas, taking on Kristaps Porzingis and the Dallas Mavericks.

As fun as last night was, the Utah Jazz have to shift their focus to tonight’s challenge — the 32-21 Dallas Mavericks.

The Jazz find themselves in yet another important contest against a team trailing them in the Western Conference standings. It would be nice to widen the gap and build a comfortable lead over Dallas, as well as take control of the season series at 2-0.

These two teams matched-up on January 25th, with the Jazz walking away with a win thanks to the clutch play from Rudy Gobert. In that game, though, the Mavericks proved to be an intriguing match-up with their five-out lineup.

It definitely gave the Jazz some problems. Dallas is one team that can pull Gobert from under the basket and onto the perimeter at nearly all times. The shooting they possess will keep them in games at nearly all times as well.

The Jazz may have won two games in a row, but they weren’t exactly comforting wins. Utah was outplayed by both Portland and Houston for the majority of the game, which is both good and bad. It’s nice to see them pull out a win in tough circumstances, but it’s also concerning seeing them play much lower than their potential.

Being on a back-to-back on the road against a playoff team won’t make things any easier for the Jazz, even with Luka Dončić out due to injury. He has a strong supporting cast that is more than capable of winning without him.

Every game is important, so let’s hope the Jazz come out with some fire and fight hard. I’m looking forward to seeing who comes out on top in this one.

Game Data

Broadcast Info

Tip-off: 6:30 PM on February 10th from American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas

TV: AT&T SportsNet

Radio: The Zone Sports Network (97.5 FM and 1280 AM Salt Lake City)

Projected Starting Lineups

Utah Jazz                Position                Dallas Mavericks

Rudy Gobert                C                       Kristaps Porzingis

Joe Ingles                    PF                      Maxi Kleber

Bojan Bogdanovic     SF                      Dorian Finney-Smith

Donovan Mitchell      SG                      Tim Hardaway Jr.

Mike Conley                PG                      Jalen Brunson

Injuries

Ed Davis is questionable to play tonight due to back spasms. Davis has missed the past two games with the injury, but likely wouldn’t have been in the rotation anyway with the return of Tony Bradley.

Luka Dončić, the Mavericks’ young superstar, is out tonight due to the right ankle sprain that he suffered in practice back in January. This will be his seventh straight game on the sidelines for Dallas.

Dwight Powell is out for the season after suffering a ruptured right achilles on January 21st against the Clippers. Powell was the teams starting center and played a huge role in their successful start.

Prediction

I’d love to see the Utah Jazz come away with a win tonight, but if I’m being completely honest, I think the Dallas Mavericks take this one. Porzingis has been playing well lately and is a tough match-up for the Jazz.

I think Utah will keep it close, but they may get some tired legs towards the end of the game. Dallas is so hard to stop and Utah’s defense hasn’t looked good lately. I’ll go with a final score of 118-105 in favor of the Mavericks.

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Discussion

#UTAatDAL is the hashtag on Twitter, and as always the comment thread will be available for some live game chatter. Go Jazz!