Last night, the Brooklyn Nets defeated the Utah Jazz 105-99. Both the Nets and Jazz played in their first game since the All-Star break, and it didn’t appear that way at first, as both teams were proficient on offense in the first half. The Jazz were unable to maintain control of the ball with 18 turnovers, which contributed to their defeat. Despite this unsatisfying result, the Jazz are actually winning by losing.
By losing tonight, the Jazz are going forward with their plans as the team looks forward to the 2014 offseason. Let’s call a spade a spade, the Jazz have zero percent chance of even being in contention for the eighth and final seed in the Western Conference this year. With every loss that the Jazz keep on accumulating, their chances of being major lottery players in the deepest draft since 2003 improves greatly.
Before tonight’s result, the Jazz had tantalized their fanbase by winning their past three consecutive games, including a win over the two-time defending champions, the Miami Heat. The silver lining in this game was the solid contributions by Utah’s backcourt of the future. Rookie Trey Burke had 14 points and 10 assists, while sixth man Alec Burks had 23 points in 27 minutes of action.
Playing a short-handed Nets team that had traded away Jason Terry and Reggie Evans to the Sacramento Kings for Marcus Thornton earlier today, Utah gave up a 13-point third quarter lead and were dominated in the paint en route to yet another defeat. The Jazz are now 19-34, good for 13th in the West and only one game ahead of fellow tanking teams in Sacramento and the Los Angeles Lakers for last place.
It’s time to face the facts for the Jazz and their fanbase. By continuing to lose this season, the Jazz will be winners this offseason.