Game thread: Utah Jazz face lottery-bound Phoenix Suns

The Utah Jazz host the Phoenix Suns tonight in an effort to stop the cold spell coming out of the All-Star break. They’ll get a good opportunity to take care of business against the lottery-bound Phoenix Suns.

The Utah Jazz are one of the coldest teams in the league right now, and that’s not an overstatement. Of their last 10 games, they’ve only won four, and they own a two game losing streak.

Not a good way to start off the longest home stand of the season. In order to make up ground for where they want to be, they will have to win a couple of games that they normally would’ve been picked to lose in addition to conquering the “easy” opponents.

As for the Phoenix Suns, they have cooled off considerably since their hot start to the season. For a minute the Suns were flirting with a near .500 record and top eight spot in the Western Conference standings.

But after having to reintegrate DeAndre Ayton back into the rotation and getting a large enough sample size of knowing who this team really is, they find themselves on pace to win 33 games and finish 13th in the West.

Game Data

Broadcast Info

Tip-off: 7:00 PM on February 24 from Vivint Smart Home Arena in Salt Lake City, UT.

TV: AT&T SportsNet, stream on fubo.tv

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

Projected Starting Lineups

Utah Jazz                  Position            Portland Trail-Blazers

Rudy Gobert                      C                DeAndre Ayton

Joe Ingles                           PF              Kelly Oubre Jr.

Bojan Bogdanovic           SF              Mikal Bridges

Donovan Mitchell            SG              Devin Booker

Mike Conley                       PG              Ricky Rubio

Injuries

There is no update this morning on the availability of Nigel Williams-Goss, who sat out the last two contests with a quad injury.

The Suns have Frank Kaminsky listed as OUT with a stress fracture in his left knee that happened in early January. The 7-footer averages 11 points in 22 minutes for the Suns this season.

Prediction

Our friends over at The Action Network have the Jazz listed as heavy 7.5 point favorites. For both the Jazz and the Suns, it will be their third game in four nights. Fortunately for Utah though, they’ve been able to stay in Salt Lake over the whole stretch.

DeAndre Ayton has been on a tear recently, so Rudy Gobert has to come alive as rim protector we all know him to be. Ricky Rubio knows a thing or two about the Jazz and their system, and seems to always play with a lot of heart.

The Suns may be headed straight for the lottery, but I think the players for the most part are tired of losing. Devin Booker has yet to make the playoffs in his career, and many are questioning  his worth as a true star in this league.

If the Jazz fail to bring the intensity in any of the four quarters, they could fall right into the trap of a team with nothing to lose. I’ll pick the Jazz to win this one, to the score of 116 to 111.

Next: Scouting out major weaknesses of the Utah Jazz

Discussion

The Twitter hashtag will be #PHOatUTA, and as always you can leave comments in the thread below. Let’s hope the Jazz can get their wheels back on the track before it’s too late!

Load Comments