Well as the old saying goes, “Stick a fork in ‘em, they’re done”
This couldn’t be more true then when describing the Utah Jazz’s current situation down 3-0 to the Defending Champ LA Lakers.
In a season filled with ups and downs and highs and lows last night’s loss was the epitome of the way the season has gone for Utah.
So close yet so far.
The Jazz led for much of the game, coming out of the gates swinging and hitting their shots. Andrei Kirilenko made his return and it was obvious how much of a difference he makes on defense, especially on Bryant.
AK got some key Offensive boards early and blocked a couple of Kobe’s shots to help Utah lead by 5-9 points for much of the game. Against Lab that’s just not enough.
It was fitting that the game ended with a missed tip by Rookie Wesley Matthews off Deron Williams missed 3 pointer just before the buzzer. If the tip went in this series would be completely different. There would be hope. But, it didn’t go in and this is where we are right now.
Tonight Utah has one more chance at extending this series and I expect them to come out swinging. Deron Williams had a good game 3 but will need a great game 4 if he wants to play another Playoff game after tonight. Don’t count on it though.
Another disappointment for the Jazz and their fans is probably coming..tonight.
The Lakers smell blood and Kobe Bryant, the best closer in the league, will want to close this series out as soon as he can and I can see the Black Mamba dropping 40 on the Jazz to end this series.
A lesser team might overlook the Jazz, think they are dead and take it easy in Game 4 but this is the defending champion Lakers we are talking about. Certain teams just know how to close games out and finish a series, LA is one of those teams.
If you are a Jazz fan I know the easy thing to is to start pointing fingers, to start dishing out the blame where blame is due. But lets be realistic, did anyone really think Utah would get by the Nuggets like they did in the first round.
At the beginning of the season did anybody think that Deron Williams would play so well this year that he would be the NBA’s consensus Number 1 Point Guard?
Did anybody think Carlos Boozer would stay healthy most of the year and contribute to this team the way he has? Did anybody think that undrafted Rookie Wesley Matthews would be contributing major minutes over First Round draft pick Eric Maynor (who was traded to Memphis)?
Did anybody really think that Andrei Kirilenko would be the spark after Utah’s 12-9 start to the season that would see Utah own the West’s best record from December to Febuary?
All of these things happened this year and Utah fans need to consider the strides Utah has made towards becoming a great team before they pass judgment based on a Second Round loss to the defending Champs LA Lakers.
There are a couple questions going into the Offseason for Utah, but there are a lot of things to be hopeful about for 2011. Boozer being the biggest question and the Draft will be huge for Utah.
Over the next couple weeks I will be reviewing 2010 and discussing what we can expect for the Utah franchise in 2011.
I’ll already say it here before anybody can beat me to it. If Utah, who owns New York’s First Round pick, gets a top 5 pick they are going to make some noise.
Enough noise to perhaps make the Finals next season? Maybe! I think if Utah gets a top 5 pick next year they are going to be good enough to go the NBA Finals. Yeah I said it!
With the impending Free Agency storm that’s brewing we are going to see a definite shift in power in the NBA. Teams that have struggled, Nets, Heat, Bulls, Knicks, to get out of the first round or even make the Playoffs will get a lot better.
But, this discussion is for another day, and believe me there will be plenty to discuss.
About the Author
Written by Danny Shapiro
Danny Shapiro is 26 years old, married and a father to 2 boys, who he hopes one day to play MLB and support him and his wife in their old age. Danny's second love, mistress even, is sports and Danny is living his dream of being a sports writer right now, thanks to Prosportsblogging.com.