UTAH JAZZ

Utah Jazz Vs. Denver Nuggets Game Seven Preview

Sep 1, 2020, 3:32 PM

Jamal Murray of the Denver Nuggets dives for a ball behind Utah Jazz guards Mike Conley and Jordan ...

Jamal Murray of the Denver Nuggets dives for a ball behind Utah Jazz guards Mike Conley and Jordan Clarkson (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The Utah Jazz and the Denver Nuggets are preparing to face off in game seven of their Western Conference First Round Series. The Jazz opened the series with a 3-1 lead, before dropping games five and six to set up the win or go home meeting. In the latest episode of the Jazz Notes podcast, Ben Anderson of KSL Sports and Sarah Todd of the Deseret News preview game seven, and how the Jazz found themselves in this position.

You can listen to the entire podcast in the player below.

Preview of Game Seven

Before offering a game seven preview, Todd and Anderson discussed the events that led to the Jazz winding up in a critical game seven meeting.

Todd: Denver got a little bit of confidence from that game five during near the end of the game where the Jazz just fell on their face. It was a few mental lapses, turnovers, and hesitations on shots, and Denver latched on to that. Denver seems to be a momentum team, because that’s all they needed to get confidence, and they’ve run with it. Meanwhile, the Jazz have seemed like they haven’t had any competence at all. And not even that, it feels like they’re relaxed in every area, rather than having been urgent at all in game six.

Anderson: They’ve lacked urgency, and it does come from two guys specifically, but I’ll even point to Rudy Gobert. I think he always plays with a sense of urgency, but sometimes he plays tough, and sometimes he plays less tough. I don’t want to say he’s soft because I don’t think Gobert is soft at all. But sometimes he tries to dunk everything and rolls to the rim hard. And then sometimes he’ll try three-foot layups and he hasn’t been making those. That’s what he was doing in games five and six. But the guys I’m pointing to are Joe Ingles and Royce O’Neal who just have not looked engaged after the Jazz went up three games to one.

Adjusting Jazz Lineups

After sticking with a similar rotation in games five and six, both Todd And Anderson wondered if Quin Snyder will adjust the Jazz lineup ahead of game seven.

Anderson: I wonder if taking Ingles out of the starting lineup and bringing in a guy like Georges Niang whose plus-minus has been good. I don’t know if Niang is a playoff player, to be honest with you. I don’t know if you can have him on the floor in super important moments, but he’s still young and can get to that point. But his plus-minus numbers say he’s been good this series and belongs on the floor.

Todd: I’ve thought about the Georges Niang thing, too, because he has been playing a lot better and his defense has improved. There have been multiple times during this series where Niang’s defense has been very surprising to me. And a lot of credit to him. You don’t have to put him out there if the game is close in the last four minutes, you don’t have to have him out there. But it could be worth it early.

Defending Jamal Murray

Jamal Murray has scored 50 points in two of the last three games in this series, leaving the Jazz scrambling for answers. Todd and Anderson discussed how they would tackle the Murray defensive scheme.

Todd: There is a danger in kind of rotating guys off of him and giving him different looks. The argument for it is that  Murray doesn’t get comfortable, and he’s always having to figure different looks things out. But each defender has to also get comfortable and I think that’s the danger there. You want a defender to know his habits and figure them out throughout the game and find out what his rhythm is.

Anderson: I’m abandoning that strategy. I’m just going to put my best guy against Murray and use my best scheme. And the scheme can’t be ‘Let’s do a little bit of everything.’ This game has to be we’re going over or we’re face guarding Murray or we’re going under on everything, but we’re trapping. And we’re going to trust that Nikola Jokic is going to blow passes or we’re going to trust it Jokic taking long twos or driving to the rim is better than whatever Murray is going to do. And right now that is the right answer. Everyone else doing anything is better than Jamal Murray making any decision right now, or taking a shot.

You can subscribe to the Jazz Notes Podcast for weekly updates on the team in Itunes

  • Utah Jazz Scoreboard

  • Utah Jazz Team Leaders

  • Utah Jazz Standings

Utah Jazz

Utah Jazz Notes season outcomes Lauri Markkanen...

Chandler Holt

Jazz Notes Season Grades: Did Utah’s Season Go As Planned?

The Utah Jazz had a very interesting season. With a bottom-10 record, many fans were left wondering if this was the plan all along.

41 minutes ago

Keyonte-George-Utah-Jazz-NBA...

Ben Anderson

Utah Jazz Mailbag: Is Keyonte George’s Shooting A Concern?

Welcome to the Utah Jazz mailbag where every week our NBA insiders answer your questions on social media about your favorite team.

19 hours ago

Utah Jazz CEO Danny Ainge...

Ben Anderson

Danny Ainge: Jazz Ready To Go ‘Big Game Hunting’

With the Utah Jazz 2023-24 season complete, CEO Danny Ainge opened up about the team's successes and failures, and its plans for the future.

21 hours ago

Lauri-Markkanen-Utah-Jazz-NBA...

Ben Anderson

What Will Utah Jazz Do This Offseason?

Though all eyes will be on the Arizona Coyotes relocation, the Utah Jazz enter an offseason that will help sculpt the organization's future.

2 days ago

: Brice Sensabaugh #8 of the Utah Jazz is guarded by Jonathan Kuminga #00 of the Golden State Warri...

Ben Anderson

Jazz Clinch Eighth-Best Lottery Odds With Loss To Warriors

The Utah Jazz included the season with a 123-116 loss to the Golden State Warriors to lock up the eighth-best odds to win the draft lottery.

3 days ago

Dario Saric #20 of the Golden State Warriors is guarded by Micah Potter #25 of the Utah Jazz...

Ben Anderson

Jazz Lose To Warriors In Season Finale

The Utah Jazz fell to the Golden State Warriors 123-116 to close the 2023-224 season with a record of 31-51. 

3 days ago

Sponsored Articles

ksl-sports-newsletter...

KSL Sports

KSL Sports Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the KSL Sports newsletter. Get the latest Utah sports news delivered to your inbox.

...

KSL Sports

Jazz Notes Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the Jazz Notes newsletter. Get insider analysis, game recaps and opportunities to win tickets!

Follow @kslsports...

The Road Home Mediathon 2023

The KSL Sports Zone and KSLSports.com are proud to support the all-day Mediathon 2023 at the Road Home, an annual tradition to raise money and other essential items for the Road Home, a Homeless Shelter.

3 kids wearing real salt lake jerseys smiling...

Real Salt Lake

6 Reasons You Need to Experience a RSL Matchday

RSL Games are a great way to spend time with your family with fun activities, good food, and traditions you can only experience at the field.

High angle view of the beautiful Rose Bowl Stadium...

KSL Digital Sales

How to Prepare for the 2023 Rose Bowl

Everything you need to know to plan your 2023 Rose Bowl trip in Pasadena, California. This year, the Utes will face Penn State.

Jordan-Clarkson-Utah-Jazz...

KSL Digital Sales

Notable Moments From The Utah Jazz Season… So Far

At the beginning of the season, the Utah Jazz were second to last. Now they rank in the top 10 teams in the Western Conference.

Utah Jazz Vs. Denver Nuggets Game Seven Preview