The Utah Jazz are the only lower-seeded team to advance to the conference semis with their victory over the L.A. Clippers. It’s a feat that should not be ignored, especially for a team that’s relevantly young. But, the stakes get much higher tonight when the Utah Jazz vs Golden State Warriors Western Conference Semifinal gets underway tonight at Oracle.
It’s a quick turnaround for Utah since beating the Clippers on Sunday. So, you have to wonder about their stamina tonight.
Meanwhile, the Dubs are fully rested. The Warriors had no trouble at all sweeping Dame Lillard and the Portland Trailblazers in the first round.
Now, we can forget about what’s happened in the past, and focus on the future. The Jazz vs Warriors may look like a mismatch on paper. But, let’s examine the matchup a little closer….
1. WARRIORS vs 5. JAZZ
Season Series: Warriors 2-1 (Jazz won with Warriors’ stars resting 4/10/17)
SwagFactor: 🔥🔥🔥🔥 / 5
It’s the Warriors. You know you’re going to watch. Plus, despite this series looking like a mismatch, the Jazz have the capability and size to make the Dubs sweat.
Jazz keys to winning
It’s the 3 P’s….. Pace, Poise, and a little Prayer won’t hurt. The Jazz have to play at a slow enough pace just to have a chance. But, if the Pace gets away from them, they have the Poise to withstand those insane Golden State runs.
The Jazz do have the size advantage. However, Rudy Gobert has to stay out of foul trouble. Gobert, in the middle could cause the Warriors to be more of a jump shooting team. Then, the Jazz have to Pray the Dubs are off. More ‘Iso’ Joe and his ‘Fountain of Youth’ is never a bad thing either.
JAZZ X-Factor – George Hill
George Hill should be able to find his rhythm against Steph Curry and his decent defense. If that happens, things could be easier for Gordon Hayward, who will likely be guarded by Klay Thompson.
WARRIORS X-Factor – Javale McGee
Javale McGee is the Warriors only legitimate rim protector. However, his biggest task in this series is to keep Gobert off the glass.
It’s just too difficult to see where the Jazz will get consistent enough scoring beat the Warriors. A Warriors’ sweep is possible. But, with the way the Jazz can defend, and with a nice home court advantage in Salt Lake City, expect them to win game or two. While, Mike Brown can handle things well, not having Steve Kerr could cost the Dubs a game. WARRIORS in 6…..