The Warriors have been perfect at home in the preseason and the actual season. At 3-1, the Warriors' record looks the part of a playoff team, except the one game they lost was against the BEST playoff team of last season in the Los Angeles Lakers.
The Utah Jazz, a perennial playoff team coached by a hall of famer Jerry Sloan, gives the Warriors their toughest challenge at home so far. After having a rough start to the season (0-2), the Jazz have been steamrolling opponents behind the "big three" of Paul Millsap, offseason acquisition Al Jefferson, and Deron Williams.
With the end of the Carlos Boozer era, Millsap has become the star that they saw in him since they drafted him. He has been putting up elite numbers at 21points a game and nearly 11 rebounds. What is equally impressive is how he is also dishing out 3.5 assists a game.
Similarly to the Grizzlies, the Jazz are a physical team whose frontline has haunted the Warriors for years. The execution of their ball rotation never fails to become the death of the Warriors perimeter defense. Players like Kyle Korver and CJ Miles have continued to torch the Warriors annually.
But lucky for the Warriors, they, too, plan their offensive attack along the Sloan system. With more disciplined half-court sets, players such as Dorell Wright have benefitted from better looks and with the results the Warriors have lacked for years: a go-to outside shooter. The Warriors play at home where their confidence is as big as their fans' commitment to the franchise. The Warriors will need to shoot as well as they did versus the Grizzlies because you can bet Sloan will ensure that every shot will be contested by one or more players.
The Warriors held their own against the Grizzlies, but their continued lack of size continues to allow for second chance point and poor interior defense. Stephen Curry practiced on Friday but continues to be a game-time decision. Brandan Wright is also day-to-day with the stomach flu.
For the Jazz, it looks like forward Jeremy Evans is out with a wrist injury. But I think that might the least of the Warriors worries as Paul Millsap, listed as probably, will play through pain tonight.