The season is officially underway, but let’s take a look at where ESPN has the Utah Jazz projected to finish this season.
Best case scenario, they have the Jazz winning 56 games this year. Five games better than they were last season.
“If the Jazz can stay healthy — reigning Defensive Player of the Year Rudy Gobert, in particular — this doesn’t seem too far-fetched. After all, Utah finished the season with a 29-6 run that started soon after Gobert returned from his second extended injury absence. It’s worth noting that Ricky Rubio, a point guard opponents have dared to shoot over the course of his career, hit a sizzling 43.6 percent of his 3s during that stretch.”
To finish better than last season, one thing is for sure. They’ll need to play as a team.
Worst case scenario, ESPN has the Jazz finishing two games below .500, winning only 40 games.
“The Jazz went 11-15 without Gobert last season. If he goes down, the identity of the NBA’s best defensive team changes significantly. There is also the theoretical threat of a sophomore slump for Donovan Mitchell, who will undoubtedly be the primary focus of every opponent’s defensive game plan. But that didn’t seem to bother him too much in the playoffs.”
The season starts with a daunting front-loaded schedule. The Jazz will go up against the NBA’s best in Golden State, Houston, Toronto and Boston. Good news is we will see how they stack up against the best when both teams are healthy, and the schedule will only get easier as the season goes on.
What record do you think the Jazz will finish with?
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