Jazz Need To Correct Defense Going Into Game 2

Apr 15, 2019, 5:24 PM
Chris Paul #3 of the Houston Rockets dribbles around Ricky Rubio #3 of the Utah Jazz as Clint Capel...
Chris Paul #3 of the Houston Rockets dribbles around Ricky Rubio #3 of the Utah Jazz as Clint Capela #15 setes a pick in the first half during Game One of the first round of the 2019 NBA Western Conference Playoffs between the Houston Rockets and the Utah Jazz at Toyota Center on April 14, 2019 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
(Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – After a lopsided 122-99 loss to the Houston Rockets in Game 1 of the NBA Playoffs on Sunday, the Utah Jazz need to correct some things leading up to Game 2 on Wednesday, particularly on the defensive end.

The Jazz suffered their second worst loss in the playoffs in franchise history. They allowed 122 points and seven Houston players to score in double figures, led by James Harden with 29 points.

ON the daily Jazz Notes podcast, hosts Trevor Allen and Austin Facer put the humiliating Game 1 loss in the rear view mirror and focused on what the Jazz should fix in order to steal Game 2 in Houston on Wednesday and return to the Salt Lake City with the series tied at one game apiece.

Changing Scheme On James Harden

The Jazz will likely change the way that they defend James Harden. They started by riding his left hip to force him to use his right hand and go to the right side of the floor but the defensive help in the paint after Harden would drive in the lane would be hard to defend for Utah.

“I wouldn’t ride his hip,” Allen said. “I would force him to go right but defend him on an angle,” he added.

Facer said that the Jazz need to figure something out to counter Houston’s offense.

“There has to be a solution,” Facer said. “They have to find a better gameplan for Game 2,” he mentioned.

Chemistry Issues?

Facer posed the question with the many players missing the end of the regular season in Ricky Rubio, Kyle Korver and Derrick Favors, if there is maybe some confusion on defensive assignments after guys missed some games.

“I don’t think it is an issue,” Allen stated. “You have the whole season of playing together, you should have it down. It’s like riding a bike,” he added.

Facer mentioned that Joe Ingles was absent in Game 1 with only four shot attempts and just three points, he was among other Jazz players who did play well.

“I think Joe Ingles was probably the biggest example of that,” he said. “He was on the floor for 32 minutes and only took four shots,” Facer added.

Check out the entire episode of the Jazz Notes podcast. Download the show wherever podcasts are found or on the KSL Newsradio app.

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