In 2010, the Los Angeles Lakers swept Utah out of the playoffs after the Jazz got by the Denver Nuggets. Following this year’s series win over the Los Angeles Clippers in seven games, the Jazz may be heading toward a similar fate against the Golden State Warriors.
Oh, there were signs that Utah could play on the same competitive plane with the team that’s been to the last two NBA Finals with one win. Once the Warriors found their way after falling behind by nine points early in the third quarter of Game 3 on Saturday night, it showed how much further the Jazz still have to go in their climb back up the ladder among the NBA’s elite.
For starters, the lead Utah enjoyed in Game 3 was its first of the entire series. When you lead by nine in your own building with a quarter and a half remaining and lose by 11 (a 20-point swing in just over 18 minutes), there’s much more work to do.
By the time these words reach your hands due to our press deadline, the series could easily be over. Game 4 was on the schedule for Monday night at Vivint SmartHome Arena and Game 5 did a quick turnaround for Oracle Arena in Oakland on Tuesday.
After the Lakers eliminated the Jazz, they went on to win the 2010 NBA title. Golden State won 67 games this season and could very easily win a second title in three seasons themselves should they do the same thing.
To be the best, you have to beat the best. It’s going to take more than one playoff series win after seven seasons for the Jazz to get to that point in their rebuilding. With what went down this season, it’s well on the way toward a fully finished product.
-One major stat should stand out as Cedar softball begins another run through the 3A state playoffs. With its impressive 10-0 rout in six innings at Desert Hills on Friday (story elsewhere on these pages), the Lady Reds finished a stretch where eight of the 10 Region 9 victories came by run rule.
And Cedar can mash the long ball with the best of them. They’ve belted nine home runs in the last four games and had one more before the playoffs start at home with Canyon View on Tuesday (weather permitting) that was too late for press deadline.
Despite the Thunder’s gaudy 23-3 overall record, the Lady Reds weren’t intimidated. They dodged multiple threats in the early innings with runners on base, then turned a two-out error in the fourth into a three-run rally that turned the title-winning tide firmly in their favor.
Stuff like that is a formula for teams to make a deep playoff run. After being the last Region 9 team standing last year – they made it to the last elimination game of Friday before falling to Juab – the Lady Reds have all the pieces in place to make sure they take the final step.
Don’t be surprised if it happens.
Follow Tom Zulewski on Twitter @TommyZee81 or email email@example.com.