9

Utah It Is!

This is the Warriors’ first bad break in long time, in my opinion. The more I think about it, the more I fear the Jazz if I’m the Warriors.
The Houston Rockets are tailored to the Warriors strengths. They are slow. They struggle to score. They lack depth.
Utah, on the other hand, have quite a bit of offensive weapons. They can get up and down the court some. They are great at home (31 wins). They are also tough and physical, particularly Harpring and Paul Millsap.
Can the Warriors beat Utah? Sure. But, from where I sit, going through Salt Lake City is a much tougher road than through Houston. The Warriors don’t have as many match-up advantages.
*Don Nelson doesn’t have as much of an advantage on the chalkboard against Jerry Sloan as he would have against Jeff Van Gundy
*Baron Davis doesn’t have as much of an advantage over Deron Williams as he would have against Rafer Alston
*Carlos Boozer, unlike Yao Ming, is athletic and the Warriors won’t be able to use the uptempo style of play to take him out of the game as they could’ve done with Yao.
*Houston is horrible offensively. If Yao and McGrady average 30 in the series, that’s still only 60 points. Houston doesn’t have a consistent, or even capable, third scorer. Utah, on the other hand, have three guys who can go for 25 (Boozer, Deron, Okur; four if you count Fisher) and they ranked seventh in the league in scoring (101.48).
*I won’t have much to do in Utah. In Houston, I had plenty of options. Any suggestions for Salt Lake City activities, restaurants, etc.?

Marcus Thompson

  • Bassman

    It is what it is; Sloan & Nelson will be the next test. The team did it’s part in the first series now Nelson has to come up with a way to win four more games and “I believe” the team will execute the plan.

    Earn the three pointers and plan defense!

  • gfp

    knock it off thompson!

  • Bradley

    After watching the Jazz all year, no opponent ever said it was fun playing them. In fact it is generally as fun as a root canal. They punch and elbow and smash people going to the hoop. Their boring offense requires 20 seconds of hard defense each possession – or they will get a layup.

    If the Warriors need to have fun to win, watch out. The Jazz are the last team you want to invite to a party.

    On the other hand, Nelson has out coached Sloan before. He just may not have enough pieces this time. Hopefully Baron plays at 100% so you can be competitive.

    If you want to beat the Jazz, you have to make your 3′s and block out on the boards.

    Jazz in 5 if Davis has problems with his hammy. Otherwise, Jazz in 7.

    For wine friendly restaurants in SLC with food that doesn’t suck – Paris Bistro, New Yorker, Metropolitan. Oyster Bar for seafood.

  • stanfordfan

    All the Warriors have to do is to win one of four in Utah. I don’t see the Warriors losing at home. One in four in Utah is a manageable task, particularly if Don Nelson does a strategic planning job of a lifetime.

  • commish

    It is really too early to tell because with Utah you know what you’ll get but the new, healthy and more cohesive Warriors will be a team Utah has not previously played except for the non-game late in the season with nothing on the line for Utah and everything for the Dubs. Also, Harrington and or Monta may come alive and then we would have an eight/nine man rotation rather than six or seven.

    Common sense would suggest that IF we can win one in Utah, we’d be hard to beat baring injuries.

  • Tim Dickinson

    Don’t count out AK 47 in your 25+ list. He’s dangerous right now.

    Rebounding is going to be the biggest challenge. Utah’s going to get a lot of second-chance points. They’re big and they’re quick to the ball.

    It could get ugly if they Warriors go three-happy but aren’t hitting from long distance.

    Prediction: They’re going to need good minutes from Josh Powell to advance.

  • Andrew Rosenblum

    I second Bradley’s points about keeping the Jazz off the offensive glass and the need not to get lazy on defense. I also think Tim’s right about Kirilenko’s awakening from seasonlong slumber as worrisome. I think Jackson versus Kirilenko will be as important a matchup as Jackson versus Nowitzki was last series. Boozer has been on fire. Lastly, that Okur guy really is a solid inside-outside threat — any center who can get a double-double against Yao is pretty good!

    All that said, I do wonder, Marcus, if Deron Williams really is good enough to match up with Baron right now, given how our guy is playing. Also, J-Rich is a lot better than Fisher, and Pietrus and Barnes match up well with Harpring, or Milsap. I would say that the key is can the Warriors get to the basket, whether through drives or post-ups (paging Al Harrington!). They simply can’t dribble around the perimeter and settle for threes.

    Because I believe, I pick the Warriors in 6.

    P.S. It’s amazing how down here in L.A. people are rallying around the Warriors. A Clippers fan I know bought me a Warriors jersey. A skater kid I saw on Melrose yesterday had a “The City” jersey on. I was at a sports bar for game 5, and people were huddled around the T.V. cheering every Warriors possession.

    Safe to say, in almost 8 years of living here, I’ve never seen anything like it!

  • http://www.animalhiphop.com Animal

    Please>/b>

    Baron = better than williams

    J-Rich & Jackson vs. Harpring/AK? Too easy. And we can literally put anyone on Okur, because he never, ever moves from the corner.

    Boozer is the only thing the jazz have going for them that could present a problem.

    HOWEVER:

    Last time the Jazz beat the W’s in Utah, they barely won, we didn’t have Baron down the stretch (or maybe the whole game), and they got a host of questionable calls. We completely demolished the Jazz at home. You do not know what you are up against until you play these Warriors. Game film doesn’t prepare you for the defensive onslaught, or the physicality and toughness. People who think the Jazz are too tough for the W’s are severely underestimating these Warriors. They’re not the simple Run-and-Gun-and-Out team of the last Nellie tenure.

    The Jazz have not played a healthy Warriors team convincingly. And they won’t. W’s in 5.

  • PQ

    “If the Warriors need to have fun to win, watch out. The Jazz are the last team you want to invite to a party.”

    The W’s have fun before and after games. They’ll win it in 6. Outside of Boozer, no one… i repeat NO ONE scares the Warriors offensively.