Year-to-year continuity appears to be rewarding the Jazz early on in the 2020/21 season, according to Ariel Pacheco of Basketball Insiders.
Led by All-Stars Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert, the Jazz have benefited from an improved defense and long-range marksmanship. The club ranks in the top ten in both offensive and defensive rating, Pacheco notes. Mitchell, too, appears to have developed his ball-handling abilities.
There’s more out of the Northwest Division:
- Newly-extended Nuggets guard Monte Morris has proven himself to be a steal for Denver thus far, per Mike Singer of the Denver Post. Morris has helped stabilize the team’s bench, posting a career high in scoring (11.5 PPG), and shooting an excellent 51.7% from the floor overall. “I’m going out there focused, playing for other guys, with a clear head,” Morris said. “The contract definitely got me at peace.”
- Timberwolves team president Gersson Rosas expressed his frustration at the general state of the team, according to Chris Hine of the Minneapolis Star Tribune. “This was another growing and developing year,” Rosas told Hine. “But at the same time, we’re not up to our capabilities and that’s to be competitive. … It starts with me and my staff. It starts with coach [Ryan Saunders] and his staff, and it starts with the players.” The Wolves are 4-12 this season, the worst record in the West.
- After signing a four-year deal in the offseason with Utah, Jazz reserve guard Jordan Clarkson is making an early case for the Sixth Man of the Year award honors with his inspired play of late, per Sarah Todd of The Deseret News. “Definitely it was one of my goals going into this year, to go get that and play that role,” Clarkson says.