HOUSTON — While it certainly factored into the sluggish start that greased the skids to their demise in Game 1 Carlos Carrasco Jersey , the Utah Jazz were inundated with a number of causes behind their loss to the Houston Rockets on Sunday in addition to the absence of starting point guard Ricky Rubio.
Defensively, the Jazz were overrun by the Rockets’
But the Jazz clearly missed Rubio, despite recording 20 assists on 38 field goals. While rookie guard Donovan Mitchell and veteran swingman Joe Ingles produced five assists each, and Utah received steady play from guards Dante Exum and Alec Burks off the bench, the Jazz didn’t quite have that same verve that Rubio provides with his ball-handling skill and passing acumen.
“I think it makes Donovan handle the ball more than they would like Francisco Liriano Jersey ,” said Rockets forward Trevor Ariza, who drew the primary defensive assignment on Mitchell. “He’s their dominant scorer at this point so when he has to handle the ball and get everybody involved in the game, it kind of takes away from him scoring the ball all the time or being aggressive all the time.”
The Jazz also missed the defensive presence of center Rudy Gobert, despite the fact that Gobert logged 35 minutes in the 110-96 loss. A Defensive Player of the Year candidate and league leader by a healthy margin in defensive real plus-minus, Gobert was a non-factor on that end, failing to record a block for the first time this postseason and just the eighth time overall.
Gobert averaged 2.3 blocks and ranked second in the NBA in block percentage (6.0), yet the Rockets had success attacking the rim with Gobert stationed there to defend it Authentic Jerome Baker Jersey , shooting 8 of 9 with