Utah’s Salt Lake Tribune has an article with a title that fully encapsulates the current situation that the Jazz find themselves in.
Down 3-0 to the team that has knocked them out of the playoffs in what seems like every season for the last decade, can you really blame them for such a downtrodden attitude?
In numerous conversations across the basketball world over the past day, the topic of the Western Conference Finals has been discussed at length. The wording differs, but most conversations include something like this:
Looking ahead at the Western Conference Finals, the Suns will play the winner of the Jazz/Lakers series. Realistically, they’ll be playing the Lakers. Up ahead, we preview the Suns/Lakers in the Western Conference Finals!
It appears that the world has decided that the Jazz have already gone fishing, and the Lakers are undoubtedly advancing. Yet they haven’t actually defeated Utah just yet.
You’ve heard it over and over- no team has come back from a 3-0 deficit before and blah blah blah. Even Utah’s hometown newspaper has given up.
If it is inevitable that the Lakers will advance, we must then ask ourselves why the players should risk injury to play the remaining game(s) in the series. Just call it done with and let Deron Williams rest those injuries he’s suffered in the last few games. Give Carlos Boozer some time to think about where he’s going next year. Let AK47 rest his leg injury so he can come back healthier with less risk of re-aggravation.
As nice as that all sounds, we need to remember that 3-0 is not enough to win a 7-game series. Ask Boston Red Sox fans if being down 0-3 means that “All Hope is Lost.”
Ask some early explorers if the world is really flat- that’s what they were SURE of.
Ask the USA Olympic Hockey Team from a few decades back if winning gold was possible- everyone KNEW they had no chance.
Yet Utah seems ready to throw in the towel.
Sure, odds are against them and the Lakers will probably win the series. Neither of those are enough to just roll over and give up, though.
Stick with it, Utah. Prove that you belong in the playoffs. Don’t go quietly into the off-season. Make the Lakers earn it. You owe that to your fans, your coach, your back office, and basketball fans everywhere.