The Utah Jazz are a good team. In fact, they have the potential to be a great team in the future. They even won a Game 7 on the road against the Clippers in the previous round. But right now, none of that really matters because their season had to go through the Warriors, and there isn’t much anyone can do about that.
The Jazz showed resilience all postseason. They lost Rudy Gobert 20 seconds into their playoff run against the Clippers, but they didn’t quit then, rallying to win that game and the entire series. They lost George Hill after Game 2 against the Warriors, and although they didn’t win a game in this series, they didn’t back down after losing him, either.
There was a moment at the end of the third quarter of Game 4 that summed up the experience of playing the Golden State Warriors. Utah was only down eight with 43 seconds left. They were showing the fight we expected from this young and promising team, trying to pull off a win.
They ended that third quarter down 14. Yes, 14. Six points lost in 43 seconds.
No matter how close this game was, or any game for that matter, it was never quite in reach. The Warriors are always one demoralizing three-pointer away from ending the Jazz’s hopes and dreams. Or in this case, back-to-back threes from Steph Curry and Andre Iguodala in less than 40 seconds.
Sure, winning one game in this series would probably have been the moral victory this Jazz team needed. But they weren’t going to get it. The Warriors are just too good and the Jazz aren’t there yet. In fact, they were only able to have a lead on the Warriors for 11 minutes and 55 seconds over the course of four games. That’s less than 12 minutes out of the 192 minutes played. That’s 6.2 percent of the series — and all of that happened in Game 3. That’s life against the Warriors.
The foundation is in place for the Jazz moving forward. They have an important offseason ahead, largely due to the free agency that looms over Gordon Hayward. The Jazz need him to come back if they want to keep this moving forward.
The Jazz were a good, strong team and should be proud of what they accomplished this season. But they met their fate against Warriors, like so many others.