The Jazz got a needed boost on Friday night by beating the Nets at home, 112-97. Wednesday’s loss to Minnesota was probably Utah’s worst game of the season. During a time of year where wins come at a premium, the Jazz knew they couldn’t afford to let another opportunity slip.
Utah’s response was exactly what Jazz fans were hoping for. George Hill, who self-admittedly played poorly (he used stronger words when addressing the media to describe his play) against Minnesota, had his best game of the year against Brooklyn. Hill scored 34 points on just 12 FGA. There have only ever been nine such games in NBA history.
Hill’s ability to score has been a barometer for Utah’s success this season. The Jazz are 14-1 in games where Hill scores 20 points or more. When asked about the team’s success when Hill scores 2o or more, Quin Snyder pinned it to his point guard’s efficiency. In his remarks to the media Snyder said, “If [Hill] is putting up 20-point plus games he’s shooting a high percentage because he’s not prone to taking bad shots.”
George Hill also has an ability to stretch the floor and get his teammates in good positions to score. His understanding of the game makes him an invaluable asset to his teammates. Derrick Favors was a prime example of this on Friday.
Favors started the game 6/6 from the floor. Derrick has come a long way since his early season injuries. He was an important physical presence in Utah’s win tonight. It would be a crime not to mention that Favors also hit his third three pointer of the season on Friday night. He has a good looking shot, and it wouldn’t be surprising if that became more a part of his game.
Overall Friday night was a godsend for the Jazz. Not only did they pick up a confidence-building win, they also got some favorable results from around the league. The Clippers, Grizzlies and Thunder all lost on Friday. It seems like the Jazz got bailed out from their bad home loss to the Timberwolves.
Utah will travel to Sacramento on Sunday night, then return home to face the Pelicans on Monday.
Quin Snyder Postgame –
George Hill Postgame (34 points, 7 assists) –
Gordon Hayward Postgame (12 points, 6 assists) –