Monday, March 10, 2008

Finishing Strong

Lets take a look at Utah’s last 6 games and see why the Jazz must win as much as they can right now:
Apr. Fri 04 vs San Antonio
Tue 08 @ New Orleans
Thu 10 @ Dallas
Sat 12 vs Denver
Mon 14 vs Houston
Wed 16 @ San Antonio

The one positive I see is that if by that last game San Antonio has it’s playoff seed finalized, the Jazz will have the best shot they’ve had in a while to win a game in San Antonio.

Here is how the Jazz have fared against Western Conference playoff contenders:

Golden State 3-0 Remaining: 0
Denver 2-1 Remaining: 1
Phoenix 2-1 Remaining: 0
Dallas 2-1 Remaining: 1
New Orleans 2-1 Remaining: 1
San Antonio 1-1 Remaining: 2
Houston 1-1 Remaining: 1
L.A. Lakers 1-2 Remaining: 1

Overall 14-8 Remaining: 7

That’s not too shabby. They’ve won 2 season series, they are winning 3 more, and they are tied for 2 more. The Jazz could end up winning all the series except for tying one, or they could end up losing 3 series and tying 3 series. It’s in their hands.

Here’s the Jazz remaining schedule minus those 6 games:

Tue 11 @ Chicago
Wed 12 @ Milwaukee
Fri 14 @ Boston
Sat 15 @ New Jersey
Mon 17 vs Toronto
Thu 20 vs LA Lakers
Sat 22 vs Seattle
Tue 25 vs Charlotte
Fri 28 vs LA Clippers
Sun 30 @ Minnesota
Mon 31 vs Washington

The Jazz better go at least 8-3 over that stretch. These final 17 games will be make or brake for the Jazz. They could clinch home court advantage in the Western Conference playoffs, thus clearing a path to Finals. Or they could completely miss the playoffs. I’m sure Coach Sloan realizes this and will have the Jazz prepared.

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