The Utah Jazz have only played 12 games in the NBA Finals during their 48-year history, and they have zero banners to show for it. It could be worse. The Pelicans, Clippers, Timberwolves, Nuggets, Grizzlies, and Hornets have never even made an appearance in the Finals.
Despite not having much team success in the big games, the Utah Jazz are the fourth-most winningest team in league history and boast six Hall of Fame players. The Jazz lost to Micheal Jordan, the Bulls, and arguably the greatest team ever. They had everything they would need in a normal campaign, but Jordan and company were anything but normal. Despite putting the team on their back occasionally, the Jazz were never able to prevail. It’s a team game, but the best performances are often handed to individuals. Here are the ten best individual performances in the 12 Finals games the franchise has played.
#10: Karl Malone – 1998 Game Four
The Jazz lost this game in Chicago by four measly points, but it wasn’t the fault of Karl Malone. The Mailman delivered a cool 21 points and 14 rebounds. That was an average game for Malone that year, but you could make a case that 1998 was Malone’s best individual season and the best by someone who didn’t win MVP.
Just because it was an average game for Malone doesn’t take away from its greatness. Jordan and Pippen combined for 62 points, otherwise, Malone would have willed the Jazz to a win by himself.