On a night when the’d hoped to build on the momentum they’d created in Houston, the Utah Jazz put up one of their worst performances in recent memory.
The Houston Rockets came out on a mission to prove they are still the #1 team in the league and they sent that message from the opening tip. James Harden and Chris Paul carved up the Jazz defense from start to finish. Surprisingly, it was probably the Rocket’s defense that was even more impressive.
Utah looked out of sink the entire game and never found a rhythm. Donovan Mitchell had his worst postseason outing shooting 4/16 from the field for 10 points. But it wasn’t just Mitchell who struggled. Joe Ingles, who was so magnificent in Game 2, shot 2/10 for 6 points with 5 turnovers. Rudy Gobert’s stat line looks efficient from the box score, but his defensive impact was almost non existent. It may have been from the Rocket’s scheme, but, more likely, it was the Rocket’s talent that negated Gobert.
For the Jazz to be successful they’ll have to find ways to help Gobert impact the game more on defense. This may mean that the Jazz perimeter defenders have to defend even better. Easier said then done when your guarding a hall of fame back court.
The one bright spot for the Jazz was the play of Royce O’neale. He guarded James Harden as well as anyone and was hitting his threes on the offensive end. More than once his play put a little life into the Jazz only to have those small sparks put out by the Rocket’s hot shooting.
Whatever the case, the Utah Jazz have a lot of adjustments to make if they want a chance to even things up in Game 4.

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36 replies
  1. Robert Benjamin
    Robert Benjamin says:

    The Jazz need to put Raul Neto and start him at point guard and then substitute David Stockton in for Neto and keep either one of those two players in for the whole game in game four. With Rubio out, they don't have a point guard. The result is that in the half court offense the Jazz offense completely shuts down. It's time for those two players, Raul Neto and David Stockton to earn their paycheck. Rondo shot two for eleven and the Pelicans won by a gazillion points. Why??? Because Rondo got fifty thousand assists for the Pelicans against the Warriors in that game that is why.

    Without a quarterback football teams never win. Donovan is too valuable as a scorer and all around disrupter on offense away from the ball. The Jazz need to make a commitment to the point guard position in the half court offense or this series is over.

    The Jazz don't have a chance if they don't get a real point guard in there. Zero chance. Everything that the Houston defense did in game three can be destroyed by a smart point guard.

    Raul Neto is a smart point guard. David Stockton is a smart point guard. Yes Rubio is injured and he is not playing. But you can't cry over spilled milk. The Jazz will never win playing Iso-ball (isolation basketball) for the whole game. That isn't Jazz basketball, that isn't what got them to the playoffs, not at all.

    If the Jazz don't make this adjustment (and yes it would be a bold adjustment to put one of their two backup point guards in at all times the whole game) they don't have a chance against the smothering Houston half court defense.

    There is a reason for point guards in basketball. That's the reason. Simple as that.
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    Reply
  2. Kartikey Sharma
    Kartikey Sharma says:

    Chris Paul was 15 points on 17 dhots and rockets only shot 30% from 3…that's the scary part…they can have even more dynamite performance than this…really want gsw Vs rockets…much respect to jazz though

    Reply
  3. Christian Regala
    Christian Regala says:

    Rckets fan here..I really enjoy your analysis and vids. Generally don't enjoy other other team's fan takes but I like the fact your vids are not so emotional and you actually make an effort to provide an objective analysis

    Reply
  4. Player Review
    Player Review says:

    I want to see a more physical Jazz, like we've seen in some of the other playoff games. Also, we need Rubio back. Favors only played 13 minutes, is he too slow to defend his position on the Rocket's roster? Good game for Royce O'Neale, but Utah was pretty much a no-show in this game 3. I have no idea how that happened, we all know they're way better than that garbage defense.

    Reply
  5. Royal Ace
    Royal Ace says:

    As a Rockets fan growing up in the 90s, I was pretty much ingrained to be Anti-Jazz. Despite that, I've always enjoyed your post game videos and really respect you overall. I've seen so many people who were just overtly biased with their teams (OKC fans) and always seemed to be disrespecting other teams and fanbase. You're one of the few that would give a genuine take on the game & as a NBA fan, I appreciate that.

    Even though I am a huge Rockets fan, I would not hesitate to be extremely critical on the Rockets but also give credit to opposing teams. These last few years I have grown to really respect the Jazz and their organization. The future is incredibly bright for the Jazz & you guys got a great young cornerstone player in Donovan Mitchell.

    Reply
  6. David Green
    David Green says:

    Tough game. Mitchell and Ingles really needed Rubio running the offense out there this game. Sucks he's hurt. Two years in a row where the Jazz's starting point guard is injured for the second round of the playoffs.

    Reply
  7. natskivna
    natskivna says:

    30 year Rocket fan here: The Rockets "wrinkle" in tonights game offensively was the very high number of midrange shots they took. The Jazz were taking away the lob and 3…so the Rockets took the easy floaters and 15 foot open jumpers. The Rockets also played some of the best defense I've seen them play in weeks. Very few uncontested shots like Ingles got in game 2.

    Reply
  8. Nick Jaramillo
    Nick Jaramillo says:

    Utah GOT SHELL Shacked they seriously sounded Like they were Oblivious and Discombobulated, Utah should bounce back strong in super desperation in game 4 hopefully to bounce back , and even the series, I seriously DON'T Expect Jazz to give up Both homecourt games, and they always fight stronger after a huge let down

    Reply
  9. will
    will says:

    I'm a huge rockets fan and I really respect you. You are completely unbiased. You are really the only hardcore fan that gives respect where it is due. Also SLC do you think capela is going to be a top 3 big in the next 2-3 years.

    Reply

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