The Utah Jazz punched their ticket to the playoffs with a win on Tuesday against the Phoenix Suns. They beat the Suns in their typical style, with high scoring and strong rebounding. Now, Al Jefferson and company have a best-of-seven series with the San Antonio Spurs to look forward to.
Some might believe that since the Jazz hold the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference, they’ll be knocked out in the first round. All the Spurs have to do is play the tenacious game they've played in the regular season. Perhaps they’ll simply outscore the Jazz the way they’ve run away from other high-scoring teams, like the Suns.
However, the Jazz aren’t just a mediocre team that slipped into the playoffs near the end of the season. They’re a solid shooting team that rebounds and blocks shots in bunches. They have a balanced scoring attack, with four players averaging double figures and no one averaging 20 points per game.
Indeed, the Jazz have weaknesses that can be exploited. Jazz players tend to foul, ranking second in the NBA in personal fouls (21.9 per game). Also, their defense is suspect, allowing 99.1 points per game (seventh worst in the league).
The following is a guide on how to beat the Jazz in the playoffs.