Jazz Looking To Fix Recent String Of Slow Starts

Mar 22, 2021, 6:18 PM | Updated: 6:20 pm
Bojan Bogdanovic Jazz...
Utah Jazz forward Bojan Bogdanovic (44) hits a 3-pointer in Salt Lake City on Saturday, Dec. 26, 2020. (Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News)
(Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The Utah Jazz have run into a string of slow starts. Despite owning the best record in the NBA, the Jazz are one of the worst teams in the league to open games, ranking 21st overall in Net Rating during first quarters over the last 10 games.

Though the team’s defense to open games has been respectable, its offense has been surprisingly poor.

For the season, the Jazz have an offensive rating of 116.6, good for second overall in the NBA. However, during the first quarter of games over the last 10 appearances, that number plummets to 101.2, fourth-wost in the NBA ahead of only the San Antonio Spurs, New York Knicks, and Houston Rockets.

Before the Jazz face the Chicago Bulls on Monday night, Snyder discussed the team’s slow starts.

“If you’re turning the ball over offensively it’s very difficult to defend those possessions,” Snyder said. “So if we have early turnovers and we’re not getting to the next play and teams are running against us, it stands to reason that we’re going to be lacking in transition, so our offense really can help our defense.”

Over the last 10 games, the Jazz are averaging 13.9 turnovers per game, 4.2 of which are coming in the first quarter. That number dips to 3.8 in the second quarter, 3.0 in the third, and 2.8 in the fourth.

But the first quarter problems don’t fall squarely on the offense. Snyder said the Jazz defense can help the offense by preventing the opposing team from making shots.

“if you’re taking the ball out of the net becomes more difficult to score, so I think if we get stops, we’ll have more rhythm in the early part of the game offensively.”

The Jazz and Bulls tipoff at 7 pm MT and the game will be broadcast on AT&T SportsNet.

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