We see Los Angeles and Kobe Bryant carrying the last two NBA Championships walking around. We also see Kevin Durant and his hungry Oklahoma City squad. I’m really liking this Utah squad. If you didn’t read my 25 fearless predictions ( which you should), I have Utah as my representative for making the Finals out the west.
Call me crazy? I don’t think so. There’s something really special about this Utah team. I mean, REALLY special. I feel some potential 1998 in them. For one, we all can agree they’ve been the best western conference not named LA for the past 3 seasons? The Jazz just had the worst luck because the second round opponents have always been Los Angeles. I also need to say this: Al Jefferson is better then Carlos Boozer. Boozer right now has more playoff experience then Jefferson but when Al Jefferson was healthy, he was a legit top 20 player in the NBA. Throw in the fact he’s a boulder inside, playing next to Deron Williams and the 2nd season off the ACL tear? Al Jefferson could be in for a 23-13 season. I’m just putting that out there.
I planned to write this article a couple days ago and compare Gordon Hayward to Jeff Hornacek but….I was wrong. I know it was preseason but 26 points against the Lakers? I believe he also went 10-11 from the field. He’s a key piece to this team’s rotation. Anything you can get from Hayward ( I’m predicting 11 points, 4 rebounds) is a plus.
One thing Bill Simmons said that intrigued me ( go listen to the last podcast), Simmons said he liked the Williams-Bell-AK47- Milsap-Jefferson starting line is the one he liked the most. Is that the best lineup? I don’t know. Right now, thier bench would be Watson, Hayward, Fesenko, Elson, Miles and ( when he returns) Okur. I really think Utah needs to get a shooting guard.
I cannot explain it, but I feel something with this Utah team. Don’t sleep on them.