This Utah Jazz are shooting and making three-pointers at a historical pace right now. It is absolutely beautiful to watch. Their shooting is a reason why they have the best record in the NBA this season at 25-6. Utah has been great defensively over the past few seasons but lacked offensive firepower. However, they are hitting on all cylinders offensively this season. The Jazz currently are the only team in the top-five in both offensive and defensive efficiency.
The Jazz have been nothing short of amazing during the regular season so far. They currently lead the league in three-pointers made (16.8 makes per game) and in attempts per game (42.5 attempts per game). Furthermore, Utah has been efficient from three as they are shooting 39.7 percent, which is third-best in the NBA. In fact, the Jazz became the fastest team to make 500 three-pointers in history only needing 31 games to hit that mark.
In their last game against the Charlotte Hornets, they set a franchise record with 28 made threes. They have multiple players who excel at the off-the-dribble and catch-and-shoot threes. It was on full display that game.
The scariest thing about the Jazz offensively is that they have six players who shoot above 38 percent from three. Those players are Joe Ingles, Jordan Clarkson, Royce O’Neale, Mike Conley, Bojan Bogdanovic, and their best player Donovan Mitchell. This is why the Jazz can space the floor so well and bury their opponents with their shooting.
Another scary thing about this Jazz team is that they do not always need to rely on their shooting to win games. They are ranked second-best in defense efficiency and allow the third-fewest points per game. That great defense is anchored by their two-time Defensive Player of the Year in Rudy Gobert who is one of the best rim protectors in today’s game.
Gobert is currently averaging 2.8 blocks per game this season which is second-best in the NBA. But those statistics do not tell the whole story. Gobert’s defensive presence has either altered shots in the paint or deterred players from attacking the rim. The Jazz also have great on-ball defenders in Ingles, O’Neale, and Conley who can wreak havoc on that end of the floor. So whenever the Jazz struggle offensively, they can fall back on their defense to win games.
Utah has played like the best team NBA up until this point with their shooting and their defense. However, it remains to be seen whether or not they can sustain this level of play given their lack of success in the playoffs. Typically, all of the great offensive teams who have had success in the playoffs score from all three levels. The hope for the Jazz is that they do not end up like the 2018 Houston Rockets offensively. The Rockets died by the three-point shots in the playoffs.
Utah has five more games to play before the All-Star break. Their next game is against the Los Angeles Lakers at home before they head off on the road. It will be a good test for Utah to see how well they stack up against the reigning champions.
Embed from Getty Images