Friday at 1 p.m. ET, the Jazz face the Spurs. But Utah will do so while giving plenty of rest to a number of key players. Here’s the Salt Lake Tribune reporting:
Of course, with Thursday afternoon’s injury report, we may surmise that where the Jazz are going is to an immediate loss against the Spurs on Friday morning.
After all, with four starters — Rudy Gobert, Donovan Mitchell, Mike Conley and Royce O’Neale — slated to sit out due to rest, left peroneal (ankle tendon) strain, right knee soreness, and right calf soreness, respectively, defeating even ninth-place San Antonio would take some doing.
Anyway, that’s the bad news. Now, a look back at the previous pretty good, really bad, somewhat less bad, and somewhat kind of good news …
After the Jazz opened up with a win against the Pelicans, some observers wondered if Utah was potentially capable of securing the Western Conference’s postseason No. 3 seed. Then, after back-to-back losses to the Thunder (wholly dispiriting) and Lakers (merely disappointing), the panic brigade began disseminating widespread missives on the inevitability of the seventh seed. And after a victory over the Grizzlies that was discouraging for how competitive it was, but also encouraging for the signs of progress evident within, the general assessment of the Jazz now is …
Leading scorers for the Jazz this season:
Donovan Mitchell 24.0 PPG
Bojan Bogdanovic 20.2
Rudy Gobert 15.1
Jordan Clarkson 15.0
Mike Conley 14.4
And for the Spurs:
DeMar DeRozan 22.2 PPG
LaMarcus Aldridge 18.9
Patty Mills 11.6
Bryn Forbes 11.2
Derrick White 11.0
With the Jazz also without Bojan Bogdanovic (injured), this is a good opportunity for the Spurs to snag a win and keep their playoff hopes alive. But they face an uphill battle in a crowded West.
Meanwhile, Utah sits 4th in the West and already clinched a postseason spot.