*Editor’s note: This post is brought to you by @jermsguy.
Four things I learned from tonight’s game.
1. Bench all the starters! These “starters” might have some giant blackmail material on the front office. Maybe it’s written into each of their contracts. “…and will start a minimum of 90% of their games.” Except Al has the 100% clause. The starters start so poorly so often, and yet no change is made. Here’s a win-win suggestion: yank three starters the second they go down four. Tell them that’s why you did it. They’d go out in the first minute for some games, but it’s the only way they’ll learn. Since, you know, we can only change the starting lineup due to injury.
2. Alec Burks is the point guard of the future! Okay, not really, but he’s their best option with Mo Williams out perhaps the season, Jamaal Tinsley breaking down like a 35-year-old shocked by all of these heavens-to-betsy minutes, and Earl Watson playing like someone’s holding his voodoo doll. The Burks-Foye combo is looking good. In fact they have the highest +/- of any 2-man Jazz combo over the past 10 games at +54. So start Tinsley, give the poor fella two minutes, then bring in Burks.
3. We have the best defensive small forwards in the NBA! Marvin Williams may not be putting up great offensive numbers, but his counterpart rarely gets a good night. Marquis Daniels was held to 0-4 shooting, and then when Mike Dunleavy came in, he was held to 3-13. And when Marvin goes out, DeMarre Carroll (11 pts, 4 rbs, +18) comes in. Then Millsap slides to the 3 so Favors & Kanter can stay in the game.
4. We’re going to the playoffs! #5 Memphis has lost their last 2. #6 Golden State have lost their last 2. #7 Utah has won their last 2. #8 Houston and #9 Portland each lost tonight. The Jazz are on pace for a 47-35 record, but the way these other guys are playing, the #5 spot suddenly looks very attainable.
Where did tonight’s coaching job rank on the FireTy-meter? Going from 0-10, 0 being Ty makes Phil Jackson look like a junior high assistant coach, and 10 being Greg Miller decides he’d rather have Karl Malone as head coach than let Ty be around the team one more minute, tonight he gets a 3.
Ty doesn’t get a 0 because the first ten minutes of the first quarter amounted to a K-Mart dumpster fire. It was a show about Honey Boo Boo’s cousin whose hobbies include fingerpaints and collecting pine needles. Ty shows comical deference to his veterans, and they’ve rewarded him with eggs, just laying there. He also earns some ire for yanking out Enes Kanter and Derrick Favors when each were about 30 seconds away from getting double-doubles. Kanter was benched after only 17 minutes of play when the guy had 17 points, 9 rebounds, 2 assists, 5 blocked shots and +8. What more can a guy do to stay on the floor? Favors had 9 points, 11 rebounds, 2 assists, 3 blocks and +9 in 21 minutes.
But Ty gets no higher than 3 because for the last three quarters, you can’t argue with his results. After watching the second unit erase the 12-point hole the starters had dug, they came back in determined not to get shown up. Big Al remembered how to rebound, Millsap remembered how to block, and they all remembered how to defend. The guy who had the most energy all night was DeMarre Carroll, and Corbin gave him an unheard of 33 minutes. The offense looked just fine run by Burks, so Burks, victim of so many DNP-CD’s, played over 29 minutes. I’m burying the lead here. TY CORBIN LET ALEC BURKS PLAY FOR OVER 29 MINUTES!