Jazz Want More Spacing, Better Paint Attack In Game Four

Jun 13, 2021, 9:20 PM
Kawhi Leonard of the Los Angeles Clippers passed the ball against the Utah Jazz (Photo by Sean M. H...
Kawhi Leonard of the Los Angeles Clippers passed the ball against the Utah Jazz (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The theme coming out of the Utah Jazz film session on Sunday after Saturday night’s game three loss was spacing.

The Jazz fell to the Los Angeles Clippers 132-106, despite shooting a blistering 43 percent from the three-point line. While the Jazz shot well from deep, they struggled inside the paint the get easily, leading to calls for better spacing on the offensive end.

“We shot a really a poor percentage at the rim, much less than I think we have consistently, Jazz coach Quin Snyder said. “Some of that was maybe the Clippers speeding us up some and attacking, and some were just shots that we have to make.”

The Jazz shot 17-40 inside the three-point line, including 16-35 inside the paint, and just 2-10 outside of the restricted area. The Clippers meanwhile were on fire from two-point range, connecting on 31-53 shots inside the arc.

Much of the Jazz struggles came early with the Clippers’ small starting lineup preventing the Jazz from getting to the rim with a new defensive look.

“They threw something at us different in game three that we hadn’t seen,” Donovan Mitchell said after going scoreless in the opening quarter.

The Jazz responded well after halftime, trimming their deficit to just eight after trailing by as many as 17 in the third. However, the Jazz run collapsed late in the quarter, leading to an 11 point Clipper lead entering the fourth quarter.

In the final period, Georges Niang, Derrick Favors, and Royce O’Neale each committed two turnovers, often passing into a crowded area, erasing the offensive flow the Jazz needed for a comeback victory.

“It’s a game of inches,” Mithcell said of the importance of maintaining proper spacing. “Where you’re deep in the corner or deep on the high quadrant so if they want to trap or they want to blitz or they want to shift, you make easy reads and it makes it easy for everybody.”

The Jazz and Clippers tip-off game four Monday night at 8 pm MT on TNT.

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Jazz Want More Spacing, Better Paint Attack In Game Four