Nov 1, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Utah Jazz forward Derrick Favors (15) lays up the ball against the Phoenix Suns forward P.J Tucker (17) and forward Miles Plumlee (22) in the second half at US Airways Center. The Suns defeated the Jazz 87-84. Mandatory Credit: Jennifer Stewart-USA TODAY Sports

Suns Versus Jazz Part I: Keys to the Game


 

Phoenix starts a home-and-home set Friday in Utah with the abysmal 2-14 Jazz. After the game, both teams travel to the valley of the Sun to run-it-back Saturday night.

The Suns should be favored in this game, so they just have to figure out how to not give the game away.

Key matchup:

Miles Plumlee versus Derrick Favors. Plumlee will have a handful in this two-game stretch dealing with Derrick Favors. He is a load down in the post, so Plumlee will have to attempt to push him off his spot on the block, if he doesn’t want to get worked over down low. On offense, Plumlee needs to capitalize on his speed and athleticism, driving hard to the rim, trying to get Favors in foul trouble.

What the Suns offense needs to look out for:

With Bledsoe thrown back in the mix, they need to continue sharing the ball, and not just be complacent, letting Bledsoe go isolation and force him to make a play by himself.

What the Suns defense needs to look out for:

With Phoenix facing a Utah team that has a good post offense, they need to figure out how to double-team without giving up an open three-pointer on the weak side. Also look out for cutting and slashing players like Gordon Hayward.

Jazz impact player Suns need to watch out for:

Brandon Rush is coming back from a knee injury and has had some pretty good games against the Suns in the past, so I could see him breaking out in these two games against Phoenix.  

Injury update:

Eric Bledsoe is almost certainly playing Friday after missing six games with a shin injury. The Suns haven’t missed their leading scorer too much, but it will be nice to have the stability of the even-keeled Bledsoe on the court.

Prediction:

Suns will win by a score of 107-93. Dragic will lead the team in points and assists. My deep sleeper prediction is that Archie Goodwin will have a good game.

Tags: Basketball Brandon Rush Derrick Favors Eric Bledsoe Gordon Hayward Miles Plumlee NBA Phoenix Suns