UTAH JAZZ

Lackadaisical Jazz Fall Below .500 After Loss To Pelicans

Jan 23, 2024, 9:26 PM | Updated: 9:27 pm

Utah Jazz forward Lauri Markkanen...

Utah Jazz forward Lauri Markkanen (Source: Scott G. Winterton, Deseret News)

(Source: Scott G. Winterton, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY – The Utah Jazz started slow for the third straight game, and for the third straight game they lost, falling to the New Orleans Pelicans 153-124.

The Pelicans set a franchise record with 153 points behind 33 points from CJ McCollum.

Collin Sexton led the Jazz with 22 points. With the loss the Jazz fell to 22-23 on the season.

Jazz Suffer Another Slow Start Against Pelicans

For the third straight outing, the Jazz found themselves trailing by double-digits in the first half, but unlike their losses to the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Houston Rockets, they never made a serious push to get back into the game.

The Jazz trailed by 10 late in the first quarter, 21 in the second, 24 in the third, and fell behind by as many as 34 in the fourth quarter as the Pelicans gradually squeezed the air out of the roster.

“The first quarters of the last two games and tonight’s game, we’re just not playing hard enough,” Jazz coach Will Hardy said.

The Pelicans found an early offensive rhythm shooting 13-26 from the floor, including 5-11 from three while scoring eight second-chance points in the first quarter.

In total, the Pelicans scored on 11 of their 12 second-chance opportunities throughout the game as eight different players recorded an offensive rebound.

“They had 65 points between second chance and transition,” Hardy added. “And to give up 35 points in transition on a night where we only had eight turnovers is not very good.”

New Orleans finished the game with a 57-38 rebounding advantage as the Jazz looked like the physically inferior team once again.

“It only counts as one loss, but our team needs to regroup right now,” Hardy concluded. “I think we’ve shown over the last five weeks that we’re a good basketball team.”

Has Keyonte George Hit Rookie Wall?

Keyonte George has found himself in the worst shooting slump of his career, knocking down just three of his last 16 attempts over his last three games.

His last three outings have consisted of 1-5, 1-3, and 1-8 shooting performances, and he hasn’t made a shot inside the arc during the stretch.

“The rookie wall is talked about a lot, I think that wall is far more mental and emotional than it is physical,” Hardy said of the Jazz first-year guard. “The adrenaline of the first part of the season wears off and you naturally relax.”

Sign up for the new Jazz Notes newsletter! Receive game updates, exclusive analysis and chances to win Jazz tickets.

George has played the seventh most minutes of any rookie so far this season, ranks sixth in points per game, and second in assists.

After back-to-back 19 points games on January 13 and 15, his production had dipped during the Jazz’s losing streak.

“There’s a message of caution in all of that,” Hardy added. “The league doesn’t care, and the league won’t wait for you — it’ll chew you up and spit you out. So you have to keep doing the work, you have to keep approaching it with the same fire and intensity.”

George should face a lighter test over the Jazz’s next three outings. The Washington Wizards have the league’s third-worst defensive rating, the Charlotte Hornets are the league’s worst defensive team, and the Brooklyn Nets have the 19th-ranked defense.

Nightly Awards: Jazz vs. Pelicans

The “Was He Playing A Different Game Than Everyone Else?” Award:

Goes to Kris Dunn who despite the Jazz losing by 29 somehow managed to have a positive plus-minus in 17 minutes on the floor.

Dunn was a +2 for the Jazz while scoring 10 points, dishing out four assists, and grabbing three rebounds.

The next closest starter was John Collins who was a -6 in 25 minutes.

The “Good Sign But Bad Night” Award:

Goes to Lauri Markkanen who had one of his worst nights in a Jazz uniform scoring 11 points on 4-15 shooting.

He did however lead the team in field goal attempts, a good sign of his aggressiveness even when he wasn’t having success from the floor.

Markkanen needs to be the focal point of the Jazz offense even when he’s struggling after not getting enough touches against the Rockets on Saturday.

Utah Jazz’s Next Broadcast


The Jazz will face the Wizards on Wednesday at 5 pm MST in Washington. The game will be televised on KJZZ, streamed on Jazz+, and can be heard on
97.5 The KSL Sports Zone.


Are you on Threads yet? Let’s connect, give us a follow 
@kslsports


Download the new & improved KSL Sports app from Utah’s sports leader. You can stream live radio, video and stay up to date on all of your favorite teams.

Ben Anderson is the Utah Jazz insider for KSL Sports and the co-host of Jake and Ben from 10-12p with Jake Scott on 97.5 The KSL Sports Zone. Find Ben on Twitter at @BensHoops or on Instagram @BensHoops.

  • Utah Jazz Scoreboard

  • Utah Jazz Team Leaders

  • Utah Jazz Standings

Utah Jazz

Utah Jazz forward Taylor Hendricks...

Ben Anderson

Taylor Hendricks Thrives In Jazz Win Over Raptors

Taylor Hendricks had the best performance of his basketball career against the Toronto Raptors scoring 23 points and grabbing nine rebounds.

9 hours ago

Utah Jazz Houston Rockets Taylor Hendricks...

Ben Anderson

Utah Jazz Mailbag: Are Jazz Good At Developing Players?

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

1 day ago

Utah Jazz rookie Kyle Filipowski...

Ben Anderson

Kings Embarrass Jazz In Second Vegas Summer League Game

The entire Utah Jazz roster struggled in game two of the Vegas Summer League as they were drubbed by the Sacramento Kings 82-70.

2 days ago

Utah Jazz Sumer League Brice Sensabaugh finger injury...

Chandler Holt

Utah Jazz Forward Brice Sensabaugh Suffers Torn Finger Tendon

Brice Sensabaugh will miss the rest of the Vegas Summer League after suffering a torn extensor tendon tear in his left middle finger.

3 days ago

Utah Jazz rookie Cody Williams at the Summer League...

Ben Anderson

Jazz Rookies Shine In First Vegas Summer League Game

The Utah Jazz beat the Dallas Mavericks to open the Vegas Summer League behind breakout performances from Cody Williams and Kyle Filipowski.

4 days ago

Utah Jazz In-Season Tournament Court...

Ben Anderson

Jazz Learn In-Season Tournament Grouping For 2024-25 Season

The Utah Jazz learned their grouping for the second-annual NBA In-Season Tournament ahead of the 2024-25 season.

5 days ago

Sponsored Articles

...

KSL Sports

Utah Hockey Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Want to get the latest info on Utah's newest sports franchise? Sign up for the Utah Hockey newsletter!

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!

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.

Lackadaisical Jazz Fall Below .500 After Loss To Pelicans