Apr 7, 2013; Oakland, CA, USA; Utah Jazz guard Mo Williams (5) is congratulated by guard Randy Foye (8) after Williams made a three point basket against the Golden State Warriors in the fourth quarter at ORACLE arena. The Jazz defeated the Warriors 97-90. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Big Win Sets Up Bigger Stage for Utah Jazz and Oklahoma City Thunder

Man what a game!  Jazz basketball at its finest!  The Jazz are gonna be a tough out in the playoffs if they are hitting their shots and playing like they did last night.  Mo Williams playing one of his 3 best games all year and making the Jazz look credible for the first time all season beating a quality opponent on the road in a must have game.

What does last night’s victory mean for the Jazz and the playoffs?  It means that if the Jazz can win both games against Minnesota, then the Lakers would have to finish 4-1 against New Orleans, @Portland, Golden State, San Antonio and Houston.  If the Jazz can pull off a HUGE win against the Thunder tomorrow I believe the Lakers will crumble.  Sweet music to my ears!

The Thunder are coming off a loss at home against the red hot Knicks and are currently a game behind San Antonio for the top seed in the West.  The Thunder also currently have the tie-breaker against the Spurs due to conference winning %.  Tomorrow is as big and loud of a regular season game will get in any year.  Both teams desperately want the win and the win for either team will go a long way in determining the last week of the season, and whether or not games will be important.

Think of it this way:  If the Jazz win, Thunder will be 2 games back of the Spurs which means the Spurs might not give it their all against the Lakers if they’ve already clinched the top seed by that game.  If the Thunder win, then the Spurs might have to play that game against the Lakers on the second to last game with everybody playing at full speed.  If the Jazz win, the Lakers will have around a 17% chance of getting into the playoffs and that most likely will propel the Jazz into the playoffs and a first round rematch against the Spurs who will be without Ginobli.

The Jazz played well against the Spurs during the regular season and with their new found 3 point shooting since last years travesty, this year will be a much more exciting playoff with the two teams.  Hayward shot 18% last year against the Spurs and Al looked like the guy that wanted to get Duncan’s autograph rather than relish in the opportunity.  Last year’s experience was a good thing for this Jazz team IF they get to play them again this year with basically the same team.

I love this time of year!  Hopefully the Jazz will too!

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Tags: Al Jefferson Gordon Hayward Oklahoma City Thunder San Antonio Spurs Utah Jazz

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