When Phil is laughing on the sidelines, you know things are really bad for your team.

Utah Jazz: Embarrassment

Embarrassment. That is the first word that comes to mind after watching the Utah Jazz get pummeled by the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday night. The Jazz came into the game on a 4-game losing streak, and they had an opportunity to erase the bad taste in their mouths by handling the Lakers. Yes, the same Lakers that Jerry West criticized less than a week ago, saying:

“If there’s a loose ball now, how often do they get it? The reason you ‘can’t play defense’ is because you can’t! …I don’t think the Lakers will be good for much longer. You can keep a car running for a long time by changing the tires, etc. You can’t change a player’s tires.”

What West was indicating by his comments was that the Lakers are old, and they are not the team they used to be. Watching the way they dismantled the Utah Jazz on Tuesday night, though, either makes me believe that Jerry West was way off or that the Jazz are truly that bad. I’m going to go with the latter. To give up nearly 40 points in the first quarter to a team that is “old” is something that can’t be tolerated if you are the Jazz. Your team is supposed to come out of the gate fired up to beat a team that has caused you nightmares for the last few seasons, and you come out with a performance like this?!

If you ask me, the Jazz are divided right now. They are not playing as a team, and they are letting little bumps in the road derail them much more than they should. If the Jazz want to get back to early season form, they are going to need Deron Williams to be the leader that he is capable of being. He needs to either address the team verbally or he needs to change his body language on the court. There were points in last night’s game where I felt like he just mailed it in, and he stopped trying altogether. I understand that the game was ugly from early on, but as the leader of this team, you cannot show a lack of caring at any point in the game. It is the leader’s responsibility to rally the troops and fight until the end, and that did not happen. And it’s not like D-Will isn’t capable of doing that either. Just look at all the comebacks that the Jazz have this season and in recent seasons.

It is obvious that something is not right at the moment, and the Jazz need to figure it out before their once promising season turns into a pumpkin. Heck, they better figure it out now because the Spurs are coming to town tonight, and they are a league best 38-7 this season. Oh, how sweet a win would be right now.


Follow Up From Yesterday

Paul Millsap had another disappointing performance as he only managed to score 11 points in the 29-point loss to the Lakers.

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Tags: Deron Williams Jerry West Lakers Los Angeles Lakers Paul Millsap San Antonio Spurs Utah Jazz

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