22 February 2012
B+Utah Jazz (15-16)Five weeks with a winning record is longer than most would have expected the Jazz could last, even with a schedule front-loaded with home games. A year after the departure of legendary coach Jerry Sloan and All-Star point guard Deron Williams, the challenge was to stay competitive with veterans like Al Jefferson, Paul Millsap and Devin Harris while developing youngsters such as Derrick Favors, Enes Kanter, Gordon Hayward and Alec Burks. There have been some glitches: Harris has disappointed, Hayward is still very inconsistent and Favors, Kanter and Burks all could use an extra five or seven minutes per game. When the team was winning and Millsap and Jefferson were both mentioned as possible All-Stars, the kids off the bench naturally got shorter shrift. But Utah has inevitably faded in February, and now even pleasant veteran surprises like swingman Josh Howard have to yield playing time.
Read more: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2012/writers/britt_robson/02/21/midseason.grades/index.html#ixzz1n5HNhz2E
My thoughts.... I think the guys at SI hit it right on the head. The Jazz are on pace for 31-35 which is higher than I had them orignially. I was excited when they won 8 of 9 but have come back to earth and realized that my orignial 30-36 is probably right around where are going to end up. I mentioned this on the podcast the other day, but we should expect changes at the deadline. Either a trade or minutes moved around. I don't want a fire sale, but if we don't come out of this season with a better understanding of what we have on board, I feel that season is a waste. I don't want to bench Millsap and Jefferson to give the young guys 35-40 minutes a night. I don't care what our record is between 25-35 wins is not mans land. We will get to mid first round picks which will do us no good. At this moment we are only two games ahead of GS so their is a possibility that our pick ends up higher than theirs. A possibility. With a bunch of road games left and March looking evern worse than February I think Jazz fans should at least grab the O @#%$ bar.
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