On the lengthy trajectory of an NBA season, the Jazz are curving downward — to their lowest point of the season. Continuing to define their mediocrity, the Utah Jazz were much worse than just mediocre in a 113-84 blowout loss in New York on Saturday.
GUARDS: After a four-turnover, four-assist evening in which he shot 3 of 8, Mo Williams is now 7 of 27 in three game games since he returned from injury, with 12 turnovers to 13 assists. Awful. Raymond Felton (15 points on 6-of-10 shooting) tore him apart offensively.
Randy Foye was just as awful as Williams, shooting just 2 of 10 from the field. Though he has shot 41 percent from distance this season, he was just 2 of 7 Saturday night. He has shot just 4 of 21 in the past three contests and 4 of 15 from 3-point land in the past four.
With 28 minutes, Gordon Hayward saw more time than either. However, his 13 points were somewhat offset by five turnovers, and New York's Josh Smith tallied 24 points and six rebounds in just 28 minutes. GRADE: D-.
FORWARDS: Derrick Favors grabbed five rebounds and dished three assists in just 23 minutes, though his four fouls may have limited his time. His board count was quite less than the 11.8 he averaged in the previous five games.
DeMarre Carroll turned in an OK 16 minutes, though Marvin Williams (seven points, seven rebounds) did better in 20. He has averaged 10.5 points and 8.5 rebounds in just an average of 26 minutes the past two games. But his primary defensive assignment was Steve Novak, who scored 20 points with 5-of-10 3-point shooting despite averaging just 6.6 points per game this season. GRADE: D+.
CENTERS: Al Jefferson (seven points on 3-of-9 shooting) wasn't much of a factor in 25 minutes. Tyson Chandler was better in the same time with nine rebounds. Enes Kanter (11 points, seven rebounds, 26 minutes) may have been the best of the three. GRADE: C.
BENCH: It was a night for the reserves, and the Knick bunch, led by Smith and Novak, outscored the Jazz bench 75-56. Alec Burks' 14 points in 26 minutes were offset by Smith's night, though he has now scored in double figures in eight of the past 12 games. GRADE: D.
OVERALL: Did the Jazz really miss Paul Millsap this much? Or are they weary? Or are they letting up at the worst time, as they are trying to hold on to a playoff spot? GRADE: D.
Rhett Wilkinson studies at Utah State University and is the co-founder of Aggie BluePrint, USU's first student magazine. A two-time Deseret News intern, he now works as an intern for Deseret Book's LDS Living. firstname.lastname@example.org or @wilklogan
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