Postgame: Jazz 131, Toronto 99
It was a complete win for an incomplete Jazz team. The Jazz scored nearly as many points (133) in regulation as they did in three overtime against the Raptors (140) on Nov. 12, and approached all the superlatives they established in that north-of-the-border win.
• There seems to be a prevailing belief among the Jazz faithful that Mo Williams isn't a fit in the Jazz system. He shoots too much, he is selfish, he is reckless, so on. Through the first month of the season, it's all been said.
A couple of weeks back I wrote about his efforts to become a pass-first point guard after a lifetime as a scorer. Don't look now, but it appears to have happened. Tonight, Williams was 4-of-7 from the field, dropped 10 assists and committed only two turnovers. Granted, many of Williams' bad shots seem to come in close games and this was anything but that. But tonight was not the outlier. It was a continuation of good behavior for Williams. In five games since missing three games with a foot injury, Williams is averaging 13.8 points, 8.5 assists and 3.2 turnovers per game.
If he figures out a way to give the Jazz numbers like that over the course of the season, he's the dream point guard. In fact, to this point in the season, only two point guards have maintained those numbers: Chris Paul and Deron Williams.
Granted, Paul and Williams have maitained those stats for 20+ games, but do you think the Jazz would be happy with a guy like that?
• Williams recorded nearly one-third of the Jazz's season-high 10 assists.
• Staying with the point guards, Tyrone Corbin went with Jamaal Tinsley first off the bench tonight, giving him the nod over Earl Watson. Before the game, Corbin said Watson was sick earlier Friday. Tinsley played 16 minutes behind Mo Williams, while Watson came in during the fourth quarter to play 8 minutes. It continues to be a conundrum for Corbin who to go with on a given night, especially when they both play so well. Tinsley contributed 5 points and 4 assists, while Watson added 6 points and 4 assists.
• Jeremy Evans should be playing basketball somewhere. The man will only be able to jump like that for so long and it's a privilege to watch him do it. It's a shame the Jazz depth forces him to spend so much time on the bench and an even greater one that the rest of his ability isn't quite up to the level of his athleticism.
• After scoring 20 points in 30 minutes in the triple-overtime game, Linas Kleiza was a non-factor for the Raptors against the Jazz this time. He played just 6 minutes in garbage times, hitting one 3-pointers and finishing with 3 points. Jazz-killer no more?