Utah Jazz forward Lauri Markkanen (23) celebrates a basket with teammate Jarred Vanderbilt (8) against the Memphis Grizzlies in Salt Lake City on Saturday, Oct. 29, 2022.

Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

I’ve just come home from watching the Utah Jazz beat the LA Lakers again and move into first place in the NBA’s Western Conference, and there is a story here, a big story.  And since no national commentator is writing it, I’m going to.

In their first 12 games, the Utah Jazz have proven an old adage true — an old adage that no one believed any more — an old adage that says “Basketball is a team sport, and lesser players who play together can beat greater players who don’t.”

Traditional wisdom in the NBA has moved away from the balanced team concept to the idea that, to win, you need a couple of super stars surrounded by role players who support them.

The Jazz are disproving that, and are showing the world (though not many are watching) that nine or 10 team-oriented players, assisting and supporting each other, without a dominant star, can beat teams where two or three stars take more than half of the shots and are expected to control the game.

It turns out that basketball really is a team game, and we had just forgotten that for a while, since no NBA teams were playing like that.

Well, this year, one team is — and no one has fully realized it, at least not on the national level.


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Source:: Deseret News – Sports News


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