March 31, 2012; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Utah Jazz center Al Jefferson (25) controls the ball against the defense of Los Angeles Clippers center DeAndre Jordan (6) during the first half at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-US PRESSWIRE

Jazz No Match for Clippers

I’m fuming right now, so I’ll make this short and sweet – Utah lost, again. They lost to a very good, athletic and young Clippers team. A Clippers team that boasts enough fire power to make even Matt Harpring gush like a rabid Beatle-fan for two solid hours (seriously Matt, stop with the Blake Griffin/LeBron James praise – we get it, they’re good).

Once again Big Al scored 26 while everyone else either clanked shots off the back iron, or made careless turnovers. Utah’s defense had nothing in place to stop Chris Paul (26 points, six assists), or Blake Griffin (24 points, also six assists), and couldn’t even stop their backup guards. Seriously. (The Jazz have a tough time with athletic teams, physical teams and veteran teams; teams that have a powerful PG, teams that boast tremendous size and strength … how the hell did we beat LA and OKC? Were they missing players? Were they sick?)

In other words, it was a blood bath in the new LA.

The Jazz fought back, went on a 12-0 run during the second/third quarters to pull within six, but then LA woke up, cranked the engine and slam-dunked their way back to double digits. With a minute to go, Utah cut the lead to seven (at least they kept fighting), made a terrific stop, but then Big Al pulled up for a wild jumper that looked like he was aiming for the third row in the stands. Not that the Jazz had a shot, anyway – the Clips were just too athletic, too big and too tough for Utah in every position.

When the Jazz doubled Griffin, that left Butler open; if Harris and Milsap attempted to cut off CP3, he’d dish out a clean pass to Foye (17 points) or Young (13 points). And when the Jazz made stops, they couldn’t convert on the other end.

Hayward had a rough night, shooting just 4-of-12 from the field and 0-of-3 from downtown. The Jazz shot 33-percent from beyond the arc, while the Clips hit a robust 47-percent … um, Howard, Bell … we need you. Sorry for thinking your absence actually helped the team. Please come back.

I’m not sure what else to say. Kanter and Favors were again non-factors (just 12 points combined), but that’s to be expected; Milsap seems to have re-fallen into that awful February hole; and Harris again wears a clueless expression.

What gives guys?

A week ago you were the talk of the town! The big dawgs of SLC. Now, less than six days later, you’re playing timid underneath the basket and shooting with little – if any – confidence from outside.

Please, do me a favor: just tank already. You gave it a go and it was a lot of fun, but just stop. Put an end to my misery. For the love of all that is holy, stop teasing me with brilliance if you can’t deliver it consistently. Being a Jazz fan is like loving Tammy 1 – she may give you a good time, but in the end is a woman born only to torture her followers. As Ron said: “Her birth was payback for the sins of man.”

Please Jazz, make the hurting stop. Either win, or go home.

Tags: Clippers Jazz Recap

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