Utah is going to “live and die” by the three-point shot
The Utah Jazz only scored 18 points in the first quarter on 5-27 shooting from the floor. This was arguably their worst opening quarter that they have had this year and while they did pick things up in the second-quarter, they still found themselves trailing by double-figures entering halftime.
All season long, the Jazz have been known to be a team that “lives and dies” by the three-point shot and when they lost games this year, the shots just were not falling, so things were looking good in this game at the half for the Los Angeles Clippers. However, Utah stuck to their game plan and in the second-half, the shots started falling for them.
They opened the third quarter on a 12-2 run and in the second-half, Utah made 10 of their 20 three-point attempts, most of which came from Donovan Mitchell. The Jazz are an extremely gifted team in terms of three-point shooting and they have numerous guys that can enter the game and knock down a big shot from the perimeter, which is why they finished with the best record in the NBA this year.
This team prides themselves on their ability to shoot the three-ball and defend on the opposite side of the court, which is why they won Game 1 over the Clippers. Utah shot 50 three-point attempts in this game! They made 17 of them to shoot 34% from deep, below their season average, but still… they shot 50 three-pointers!
Utah is able to get virtually any shot they want given their ability to shoot from long-range and Game 1 made it very apparent that their game plan moving forward is to simply rain three-pointers down on their opponent’s heads. Even if the Clippers were to adjust their defense on the perimeter, Utah would still look to take well over 40 three-point attempts per game in this series.
The shots just were not falling in the first-half for the Jazz, but when things started clicking for them in the second-half, it was like an onslaught of offense coming straight for the heads of the Los Angeles Clippers! There are really no answers on how to stop the Jazz offense, so the Clippers just have to hope that Utah continues to struggle moving forward in this series like they did in the first-half of Game 1.