Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports
The Brooklyn Nets have fallen off a bit after a hot start. So have the Utah Jazz, who have dropped two-straight games following a four-game winning streak.
Brook Lopez is back for Brooklyn, but the results haven't necessarily been better: Lopez' 18-point, 10-rebound night against Chicago was good, but they lost late against the Bulls in an offensively ugly 83-82 loss where they hit only 39 percent of their shots and turned the ball over 18 times. The insertion of Reggie Evans into the starting lineup briefly worked against the New York Knicks, but his rebounding, defense, and hustle have always seemed more suited to the role of a bench energy player rather than a starter. Kris Humphries hasn't performed so poorly as to earn the demotion.
For the Jazz, the offense runs through the frontcourt combo of Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap. Jefferson is having a great year, averaging a double-double with 17.4 points and 10.3 rebounds, and Millsap chips in 15.2 and 8.1 as well. They do spread the floor decently well with Gordon Hayward and Randy Foye, but the key to beating the Jazz is the paint. Utah capped off a four-game win streak with a Mo Williams buzzer-beater to beat the San Antonio Spurs, but since have lost two straight to fall to 13-12 on the year.
Here's the info on tonight's matchup:
Tuesday, Dec. 18
Utah Jazz vs. Brooklyn Nets 7:30 p.m., YES