Utah Jazz Fans Should Settle For Nothing Less Than An NBA Title
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – It has been 21 years since the Utah Jazz appeared in the NBA Finals with John Stockton, Karl Malone, and others roaming the court. A long time.
The closest the Jazz have been back to the NBA Finals was in 2007 when the team reached the Western Conference Finals.
Getting that far in ’07 was very fortuitous since the No. 8 Golden State Warriors upset the top-seeded Dallas Mavericks which allowed the Jazz to play and beat the Warriors in five games. The Jazz season ended by losing to the eventual NBA champion San Antonio Spurs in the West Finals.
What does all this mean?
Well, it means that the Jazz have not made it close to a title since the pinnacle of success in the late 1990s. However, that does not mean fans should settle for just being OK or grateful just to have an NBA team in good old Salt Lake City.
Jazz Fans Should Not Settle
Our colleague Sean O’Connell wrote a piece saying why it’s OK if the Jazz never win an NBA title, with a lot of it having to be with how this team is constructed with the personalities and how they interact with the community.
What O’Connell wrote about how this is Utah’s team is correct and he was also correct on there being plenty of players fans love who suit up in the purple and gold.
Just look at how Kyle Korver talked to the media with high praises of Donovan Mitchell, or just wait for the next thing great thing Mitchell does in public.
One who is not completely in agreement is KSL Sports’ Scott Mitchell. He likes this team but he will not just settle and wants the Larry O’Brien trophy in Salt Lake City.
Utah Jazz playoff coverage:
- Jazz defeat Rockets in Game 4
- Rubio: ‘Series Started For Us’ After Game 4 Win
- Derrick Favors had a huge fourth quarter in win over Houston
- Jazz Notes podcast: Utah wins with heart
“Look, I am getting too old for this mediocrity and saying it’s OK if the Jazz never win a title. I need a title. I am a long-suffering Jazz fan. I don’t care, I want to win,” Mitchell said on KSL’s Unrivaled.
“I think Jazz fans feel the same way. If they are OK with mediocrity, look at the seven-year span where the Jazz didn’t go to the playoffs, the Jazz fans weren’t beating down the door to get into the arena. The interest in this team certainly waned in those years, and it wasn’t until this renewed optimism in the middle of last season where this Jazz team caught fire.”
With the Jazz being the only one of the four major pro sports team in the state, the fans are all in on what this team can do. There are popular players, great wins, amazing highlights, and awards being handed out; but at the end of it all, a championship is what fans clamor for.
“Jazz fans care and they want a title and they want this team to win. They believe there is a day that the Jazz will get back and they have been close,” Mitchell added. “Jazz fans feel if they can get back there one more time we will figure out a way to make this happen and win a championship.”
Jazz Fans Will Never Give Up On This Team
The way the NBA is set up today stars are needed, emphasis on the plural. To win a title, the Jazz need at least two legit superstars and right now they have one in Mitchell and a really good specialty player in Rudy Gobert.
Even if the Jazz never have that type of team that can get them to an NBA title, most of the fans will likely still be around and support the organization as it is the only major pro team in the state.
KSL Sports’ Alex Kirry explains why he agrees with O’Connell that Jazz fans will stick it out even when things go bad.
“The Jazz could be basement dwellers for the next 10 years and you will still have a fan group that will not go away. This is the only of the big four sports that we have,” Kirry said. “This is it what we have in the state of Utah. So, you are not going say, ‘You know what, I have given up on the Jazz.’
“It is not going to happen. There is no other team they can do that to. The [fans] are forced to be a part of this [Jazz team] and have no choice. If the Jazz stink, your heart is broken, but that has to be who you cheer for because that is what we are stuck with here.”
Maybe by having just one of the big four sports teams in Utah is an advantage to the organization and as Kirry said the fans are “stuck” with the Jazz.
Some fans may come and go during the lean years but when the Jazz team is good everyone comes back and that is why an NBA championship should be what every single Utah Jazz fan should want.
This team has been close once before to winning an NBA title, so there is no reason to say that they can not get there again down the road and win it all next time.