Tony Parker scored 16 of his 27 points in the 4th quarter, leading the San Antonio Spurs to victory Saturday night. Even though the Jazz got 21 points a piece from Al Jefferson and Devin Harris, they still fell short 102-90. The Jazz now fall behind in the series 0-3. No team in NBA playoffs history have come back from an 0-3 deficit in a best of 7 series.
Snap Fast Reaction
This game looked unlike the previous 2. Utah, mainly Devin Harris and Al Jefferson, looked like they came to play. This is not to surprising considering the Jazz have only lost 8 games at home all season. Despite the effort put out by Harris, Jefferson and budding beast Derrick Favors(15-11), Utah still could not hang with San Antonio as the game went on. Starting with 5 minutes to go in the 3rd period the Spurs started to pull away. Then in the 4th when the Jazz actually started to make a comeback, Tony Parker just took over and put this game in blow-out mode.
Spurs Star of The Game
Tony Parker might not be in the discussion for best point guard in the league, but he should be. Parker went bananas in the 4th quarter, scoring 16 points. The amazing thing about his game is where he gets a lot of his buckets, in the paint. The Frenchmen might be the best point guard who, down-low, delivers the goods. Whether it was him driving to the basket to score or looking to dish it out, he never let the Spurs offense become stagnant. While Parker’s assists numbers are nothing to marvel at, 6 of them, he was super efficient from the floor. Shooting 10 for 17 from the field as well as knocking down 7 of his 8 free throw attempts.
Jazz Star of The Game
The home crowd was clearly the star for the Jazz. In the previous 2 games Utah looked like garbage in every aspect of the game. Through the miracle of playing at home, they looked like a different team all together. Al Jefferson and Devin Harris struggled mightily the first 2 games. Looking like players better suited for the bench. Magically at home, they transformed into the scoring duo the Jazz were looking for. Both were more aggressive and efficient. Harris went 8 for 15 from the floor while “Big” Al shot 10 for 18, attributing to 42 of the Jazz’s 90 points. That is nearly half the teams offense.
Spurs & Their Sneaky Box Score
Go ahead, go look at the Spurs’ box score. I will wait……Done? San Antonio gets contributions from everybody and anybody. 5 players in double figures, 2 off the bench. 4 players with 5 or more rebounds, 2 of them off the bench. 7 different players with a block in the game, another 4 from the bench! It’s disgusting to think of how deep the Spurs roster is now. Greg Popovich clearly knew what he was doing when surrounding his older stars. The likes of Kwahi Leonard, Danny Green, and Gary Neal add youth and athleticism to the once boring Spurs. I can’t believe I am going to say this, but they have become enjoyable to watch.
What The Game Means
The Jazz are 1 game away from elimination. This was clearly their best effort and they still fell short. Utah’s players and staff morale must be at an all time low. It looked like Tyrone Corbin finally had a game plan, an aggressive Harris, to keep the Jazz competitive with San Antonio. It even worked, until halftime, when Greg Popovich made adjustments and out coached Corbin. That is not to say Corbin is a bad coach, but this is his first full year as a head coach. While Popovich made adjustments at half, it seemed Corbin never countered. There is no shame in saying you were out done by the grey fox that is Greg Popovich. While Corbin is young as a coach, his team is even younger. The Jazz play 4 guys under the age of 23. They are young all around, this could be used as a learning experience.
It feels like I am repeating myself here. The Spurs that call San Antonio, Texas home, just need to keep doing what they are doing.(Tried to mix it up there) There is little reason to fix something that is not broken. Keep Parker as the catalyst of your offense. Let Tim Duncan be fundamentally sound. Have Danny Green keep over achieving. It’s all good in San Antonio.
The Jazz should not feel discouraged. Sure, the likely hood of them going back from an 0-3 deficit is as likely as Colin Cowherd apologizing to Dan Patrick. But they are young. Before this series started a lot of us thought their front court would give the Spurs trouble. We did not give San Antonio enough credit. They are a really good/veteran team. Utah is really young. Corbin and his young studs seem to be learning game to game. And they have shown improvement each time out. Derrick Favors keeps being aggressive and is starting to emerge as a beast. Looking back at this series a few years from now, people might remember it more as their pubescent period. Not that they got, potentially, swept.
Watch the Jazz get swept Monday night, 8 o’clock, on Turner Network Television(TNT). Then come to Sir Charles for a recap. I double dog dare you.
Joseph Nardone is a Writer/Blogger for Sir Charles In Charge. You can follow him on the twitter machine @JosephNardone