Despite the four overtimes and all the drama, this game was definitely no classic. The Jazz played the first half exactly as you would imagine a team visiting Atlanta on a Sunday afternoon would play–especially after hosting a party the night before. Check out the promo image below. Pretty standard NBA stuff, but hard to deny it affected the team’s energy.
After shaking out the cobwebs in the second half and fighting back from 17 down in the third quarter, the craziness began. You can watch all the missed opportunities in the clip above. The Hawks were playing their third game in three nights and seemed ready to lose at the end of the fourth quarter. Unlike the previous six games, the Jazz just couldn’t put them away.
The decision to ride the starters for 50+ minutes on the first night of a back-to-back had the Jazz twitter world aflutter after the game. Check out the minutes distribution below:
The matchups were right. They were in the game. It’s tough to come in those situations after being out, be ready to go,” Corbin said. “I thought they were fresh enough. These guys (Hawks) had a played a couple of games in a row, so I felt good about the rotations we had on the floor.
As I mentioned on Twitter after the game, I’d like to live to see the day when a tough, 4OT loss on the road after coming back from 17 down doesn’t result in calling 4 heads to roll, but that’s the criticism Corbin will have to deal with. However, if any of the Jazz guys hit those open looks at the end of every session, Jazz win. It was definitely a strange move to leave Derrick Favors and Alec Burks on the bench, but I get where Corbin is coming from. Let’s see how the team responds tonight in New Jersey. The only advantage the Jazz have is that they only tired out five guys.
In the end, it was four extra sessions of free basketball. It hurts to lose a game like that, but I’d much rather have the team fight back and make things crazy than lose by 17 in regulation. Small consolation, but it shouldn’t spark the Jazz-pocalypse that seemed to overtake the #UTAatATL hashtag afterwards.
Lastly, there seemed to be a huge contingent of Jazz fans in the lower seats among the sparse Atlanta crowd. Amazing work by several of you with the signage. My favorite was the quoting of Acts 19:11. Well done.