We’ve dealt with turnover issues before — we’re just fixated on that right now, and hopefully that will go away. —Utah Jazz head coach Quin Snyder
SALT LAKE CITY — Turnovers have been a big issue for the Utah Jazz this season. They came into Monday night’s game ranked first in the league in turnovers per game (19.2) and were coming off consecutive games where they had 24 and 23 giveaways, respectively, against the Suns and Lakers.
Earlier in the day, coach Quin Snyder had talked at length about the turnover issue, describing the difference between certain turnovers and some of the reasons they’ve had so many, with new players playing a new system, etc.
“We’ve dealt with turnover issues before — we’re just fixated on that right now, and hopefully that will go away,” he continued. “When I say fixated, I don’t mean in a bad way. (You need to) take those things seriously as a coach and figure it out.”
Well the Jazz sort of figured it out in Monday night’s game, turning the ball over just 14 times, but Snyder wasn’t about to start doing cartwheels.
“It’s like we’ve talked about, it’s one game of seven, so I don’t want to overreact, one way or another,” he said. “We still have to be disciplined in how we handle the ball. It’s a collective thing; it’s not just one guy. It’s something we need to keep emphasizing.”
Point guard Ricky Rubio came into the game ranked fourth in the league with 4.7 turnovers per game, and he did better, with just three turnovers on the night.
“I’m learning a lot of new things and a lot of things in my mind, but, at the same time, I’ve got to control the ball more,” he said. “When you have a turnover, it’s no excuse, but, of course, having new teammates, new system, you’re learning a lot. But like I said, we’ve got to get better, especially me and that’s it.”
FAVORS FOR THREE: Derrick Favors made his call, some eight hours earlier.
After the morning shootaround, he talked about how he’s made 3-point shooting part of his repertoire and, even though he’d missed all six 3-point tries this season, he said, “One game they’ll fall, probably this game.”
Sure enough, just 59 seconds into the game, Favors squared up for a 3-pointer in the right corner and swished it.
He tried two more on the night and missed both, leaving him 1 for 9 on the season. But he’s going to keep looking for 3-pointers, particularly in the corners.
“I’m just working on technique and working on my form, just getting comfortable out there, before practice, after practice shoot a lot, getting muscle memory and getting confidence in it,” Favors said.
CHANGES: The NBA has made a few tweaks to its game this year, mostly to help the flow and time of the game.
Dallas coach Rick Carlisle, for one, likes all the changes.
“Everything’s moving faster — games are moving faster with the new flow package, less timeouts, less time in between free throws, halftimes go quicker so, for me, it’s all moving the game in a good direction,” Carlisle said. “There a lot of positives with it.”
Carlisle also commented on the changes at Vivint Arena, without being asked.
“This building looks beautiful, by the way,” he said. “The locker room — I don’t even recognize it. They did a tremendous job.”
JAZZ NOTES: Jonas Jerebko saw his first action as a Jazz player, getting in for the final 2:30 of the game and missed his only shot. Three former Jazzmen played for the Mavs Monday night. Devin Harris (2010-12) scored 15 points, while Wesley Matthews (2009-10) scored eight points. Also, Jeff Withey, who played for the Jazz the past two seasons, got nice ovation when he came in with 2:30 left, and he got a rebound and missed his only shot. The Jazz host Portland Wednesday night and Toronto Friday night before going to Houston for a game Sunday. Then, it’s back home for four straight home games before a four-game road trip in the East.