The Jazz and Suns meet up Friday night in Phoenix in what could be a potential playoff preview. With the Jazz hurting and down their top two guards, will this be a cakewalk for the Suns, or will the Jazz ramp up their road defense to stymie the upstart Suns?
Utah Jazz vs. Phoenix Suns
Friday, April 30, 2021 – 10:00 PM EDT at Phoenix Suns Arena
Are Utah’s Injuries Too Much to Overcome?
The Jazz put up one of the highest scores I’ve ever seen in an NBA game on Wednesday without their top two guards, but that was against the Kings, one of the worst NBA defenses this season.
Now heading into Phoenix in what could be a playoff preview, I sincerely doubt the Jazz are able to put up over 150 points again.
In fact, if the Suns’ defense is up to the task, they could hold this potent offense to less than 105 points pretty easily. With Mike Conley and Donovan Mitchell out for this game and with the Jazz potentially missing Royce O’Neale, Utah will find it hard to overcome a motivated Suns defense, potentially down three starters.
However, I’m not ready to fade the Jazz here. Even though I am very high on the Suns this season, Utah is too deep and has a lot of talent at the guard position, so while they lose a ton with Mitchell and Conley out, I think the books are giving the Suns a little bit too much credit here. Plus, the Jazz defense has been ramping back up lately and that is bad news for Phoenix tonight. Over their last five games, the Jazz rank second in the league in defensive rating, holding their opponents to just 101 points per 100 possessions. Granted, these were against some lower-tier opponents, including the banged-up Lakers, the Wolves twice, the Rockets
The Sharp Pick
The last time these two played one another earlier in the month, the score went well over the total. They both combined for 230 points, however, the game also went into overtime.
Now with the injury issues for the Jazz, I have a hard time believing they will be that hot on offense the second time around. The thing about that game was the second half defenses fell off some. The first half had less than 100 total points and each team had just 102 points at the end of regulation.
Considering Mitchell had 41 points in that one and Conley added 11 more, the Jazz
Phoenix loves to play slow and with the Jazz missing their two initiators of the offense, I have a feeling this pace will slow to favor the Suns more than the Jazz here. If that’s the case, take the under with me and cash tonight! I like the Suns for my NBA picks.
*The pick reflects the line at the moment the writer made the play, the odds at the beginning of this article show the live line movement. Since the lines might vary, don’t forget to refer back to our live odds.