Sunday evening, Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers locked up a championship. The Jazz missed the playoffs for the fourth time in as many years.
At first glance, the Jazz and Cleveland don’t seem all that similar but are they really all that different?
There are at least 3 ways that the Jazz and Cavaliers are similar:
With Thompson, Love, Lebron, Jefferson and Mozgov all playing most of the Champs’ talent plays in their front court. Mozgov is a starter on many NBA teams, yet he was unable to see the court in the finals. The Cavaliers have so much depth they can’t play the big men who deserve to see the court, especially in today’s NBA. Other than Kyrie their guards have struggled mightily.
Gobert, Favors and Hayward are one of the best-starting frontcourts in the league and I wouldn’t be surprised if Lyles pushes them for time next year. Even Jeff Withey who hardly played when all front court players were healthy made a positive impact defensively. Much like the Cavaliers, we only had one guard who was somewhat consistently productive this season. Rodney Hood was most of the firepower for our guard line.
We both have a 6’8″ play maker who has a sick chase-down block in his repertoire. I’m not saying that Gordon is anywhere close to the player that Lebron is but there certainly aren’t many players who can play make at his size.
Until last night, Cleveland was famously Championshipless. It was obvious that getting Cleveland a Championship was a powerful motivator for Lebron and co.
Similarly, Utah has never sniffed a Championship. The difference is that the Jazz are the only professional team of the three major U.S. sports in Utah so, the chances of Utah getting a championship somewhere else are zero.
The team that brings a Championship to Utah will instantly be crowned legendary. I mean Karl and John almost brought us a trophy and they’re legends to most Jazz fans.
Style of play:
Cleveland plays slow, plays defense and is a rebound factory. Cleveland basically shut down Golden State’s historic offense and owned them on the boards.
In this respect, the Jazz are more Cleveland than Cleveland in the regular season they were better defensivley and ran at a slower pace.
If slowing it down, playing defense and rebounding are what it takes for the Jazz to compete with teams like Golden State in the future, the Jazz future could be bright.