Utah Jazz indulging in more than one triple-double drought

Utah Jazz (Chris Nicoll-USA TODAY Sports)
Utah Jazz (Chris Nicoll-USA TODAY Sports) /

All in all, Utah Jazz games are the league’s No. 1 triple-double repellant.

As Andy Larsen of The Salt Lake City Tribune detailed on Monday, the Utah Jazz franchise has been without a triple-double performer of its own in the regular season for 4,761 days and counting. Remarkably, this dry spell dates all the way back to the 22 points, 11 rebounds, and 10 assists via Carlos Boozer against the Seattle Supersonics on Feb. 23, 2008.

Not only has the triple-double feat eluded only Jazz players across the past 13 years — well, except for the one from Ricky Rubio in 2018 playoff action — but Larsen also noted that no other franchise has seen less than seven during this span.

In fact, Russell Westbrook alone averaged a triple-double in every season from 2016-17 through 2018-19, and there have been more than 100 across the NBA in each of the past four seasons (on pace to reach triple-digits this go-round as well).

Yet with a league-best 27-7 record entering their Monday road matchup at 6 p.m. MT against the New Orleans Pelicans (14-19), the Jazz might want to think about taking pride in their collective drought rather than pointlessly aiming to end it. After all, some possible explanations that Larsen pointed out point to both widespread distribution and center Rudy Gobert thriving down low:

“OK, there’s definitely a certain logic to what’s going on. Jazz coach Quin Snyder’s system is very democratic with the ball, so it’s unusual to see one player garner very many assists…And rebounding duties have been vacuumed up by the big men.”

Now, what Larsen didn’t delve into is the prowess of the Utah Jazz in terms of stifling triple-double manufacturers…

Utah Jazz opponents also lacking triple-doubles

Of the 63 total triple-doubles in the NBA this season, none of them have appeared in box scores involving Utah Jazz games.

Naturally, this means that the squad in Salt Lake City — winners in 23 of its latest 26 outings — is also doing something right when it comes to preventing triple-doubles from its foes. Only seven other 2020-21 teams have yet to allow one.

It certainly makes sense to see the Jazz on that list.

See, the group boasts the NBA’s third-best scoring defense at the moment; plus, Utah ranks No. 1 with an average of 56.6 total rebounds per game while holding opponents to an average of only 21.9 assists, also tops in the league.

Looking back at a couple of other recent campaigns, the Jazz allowed only four of the NBA’s combined 227 triple-doubles between the 2018-19 and 2019-20 regular seasons. That equates to roughly half of the average amount from all 30 teams in this same timeframe.

Again, whatever is going on these days in regards to all of this particular craziness in Utah’s stats department, it’s working (see: NBA standings). In other words, there doesn’t appear to be any need at all for first-time All-Star head coach Quin Snyder and his unselfish Jazz to mess with their patented anti-triple-double formula anytime soon.

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