Game 65 @TOR: Living and Dying by the Zone
This could easily have been another loss in a line of losses. We had the usual hodge-podge of good stretches and bad stretches, but what’s most important is that the guys did not curl up and die when it mattered the most.
I have to just give it up to Big Al. He absolutely put the Jazz on his shoulders and carried them to this win. It was more than him picking up the slack with the Jazz being shorthanded. We’ve had questions about who was the Jazz’s leader and go-to guy following the
coup d’etat revolution departures of Jerry and Deron. In the post-game a few days ago, both Devin Harris and AK referred to Big Al as the Jazz’s go-to guy. There was no doubt about that tonight. None whatsoever.
Side Note: First look at our new 10-day signee, Marcus Cousin:
It came down to zone Ds. The Raptors went first, and their zone annihilated the Jazz offense. The Jazz missed around 10 straight shots, and Toronto turned a Jazz lead into a tied game into a double-digit lead early in the fourth with a 22-4 run. Then, it was the Jazz’s turn to play with a zone. The Raptors returned the favor, missing around 10 straight shots and getting outscored 8-24.
The Jazz took the lead 92-91 with 1:44 left on a Big Al putback dunk, and a Big Al jumper with 1:00 left made it 94-91. Barbosa hit a 3 to tie the game, and Earl missed one on the other end. Raja drew a loose ball foul with :17 left, and Devin Harris drove to the hoop and threw one up with the clock winding down. His shot came off the back of the rim, and Al was the first to reach it and pushed it back up. The ball fell straight down through the net, and how sweet it was.
For video of Al’s buzzer-beating, game-winning, putback tip-in, head here.
Random Stuff, etc.
** It was Jeremy Evan’s first career start. Also, Jeremy will probably be hurting tomorrow.
Unintentional Dirty Quote Machines of the Night
** Matty on Jeremy: He’s getting touched a little bit down there and it’s throwing him off balance.
** Thurl on Devin: He’s doing things that Deron Williams didn’t do. He’s penetrating quite a bit.