The Utah Jazz has seen an uptick in offense over the last three games, and part of that is due to Simone Fontecchio’s play.
The Utah Jazz made the (not so) bold call to bench Talen Horton-Tucker and replace him with rookie guard Keyonte George. George is averaging nine assists across those three games and playing pretty impressive ball. Aside from that whole shooting from the floor thing. Yet, George’s addition to the starting lineup wasn’t the only major move.
The Jazz also began starting Ochai Agbaji, while playing Simone Fontecchio off the bench more. Agbaji is playing solid ball as a starter, but his performances were never really in doubt, as many believed he was a victim of circumstance with so many other guards to play as well. Fontecchio was not seen with such optimism.
Agbaji, by NBA years, is still young, while Fontecchio, by NBA years is old. Despite being only about to hit 28, many thought Fontecchio wasn’t that good, especially after last season. Yet, his run in the FIBA World Cup woke up many to what the Italian superstar could be for the Jazz.
Over the last three games, after an increase in playing time, we’ve seen exactly what he could be with more minutes. He’s playing just shy of 16 minutes per game over the last three while shooting 46% from the floor and 44% from three. He’s only scored 16 total points over those three games but that has more to do with a lack of attempts, not an issue making said shots.
Fontecchio’s a solid defender as well, bringing with him a larger frame that many of the guards lack, and quicker feet that many of the bigger forwards can’t match.
He’s not an MVP-type player, but he could be a very solid roleplayer for the Jazz if the team’s head coach Will Hardy plays him some serious minutes.