The faltering Jazz meet the Grizzlies again, this time in the tournament
November 10 – The Utah Jazz and Memphis Grizzlies play each other for the second time in 10 days, but things are a little different this time.
For starters, this will be a season championship game and will be played in Memphis. The Jazz, who beat the Grizzlies 133-109 on Nov. 1 in Salt Lake City, will be without their starting quarterback. Walker Kesler will be out for at least two weeks with a left elbow injury.
“That’s why you always try to lean on the fact that this is a team, and try to keep everyone on the roster ready,” Jazz coach Will Hardy said. “As we all know who spend a lot of time in the NBA, things can change in an instant.”
This favors Memphis, which lost its first match in the tournament last Friday in Portland. This will be Utah’s first championship. The two teams are located in the first Western Conference, alongside the Trail Blazers, Phoenix Suns, and Los Angeles Lakers.
Without Kesler on Wednesday, the Jazz used a three-guard starting lineup that included rookie Keonte George and sophomore guard Oshae Agbaje of the season. George had nine assists and scored seven points in a 134-118 loss to the Indiana Pacers.
Hardy said: “I think we started the game well, as we helped our colleague who was guarding the ball.” “Then as the game went on, I thought the threat of the three-point shot affected our defense and we started getting closer and closer to our guy. We left our teammates on an island and the Pacers started throwing it inside.”
The result was a lopsided loss despite Jordan Clarkson scoring 33 points and Lauri Markkanen 24 points and nine rebounds. It was the fourth consecutive setback for Utah. The Jazz have a 0-5 record on the road, including losses in the first three games of this four-game trip.
Perhaps most telling is that this is Utah’s fifth loss by at least 16 points in nine games.
Memphis can use all the advantages it can get. While the Jazz have had a disappointing 2-7 start, the Grizzlies have only one win in eight games. They fell 108-102 to the Miami Heat at home on Wednesday night.
Jaren Jackson Jr. led Memphis with 28 points, but it wasn’t enough to help the Grizzlies get their first home win of the 2023-24 season.
“We didn’t have a lot of guys playing well,” Memphis coach Taylor Jenkins said. “Credit the Heat. Their physicality really bothered us. I think we were frantic at times. We couldn’t get into rhythm.”
However, the Grizzlies were within three points with 35.5 seconds left on a 3-pointer by Santi Aldama, but Miami’s Jaime Jaquez Jr. delivered a devastating blow from beyond the arc on the ensuing possession to seal the win for the Heat.
“We have a group that fights until the end,” said Grizzlies guard Luke Kennard, who scored 13 points against the Heat. “It was a little late at the end. There were spurts in the game that we kind of got out of it, and they kept running. And we stayed with it until the end of the game. It’s a tough loss for sure. Being 1-7 is not where we want to be.” in it.”
– Media at the field level
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