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Hot Take: The Utah Jazz, your 2020 NBA Champions

Atlanta Hawks v Utah Jazz Photo by Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images

Welcome to Hot Take Week on Detroit Bad Boys. Longtime readers of Detroit Bad Boys might remember the old slogan on the masthead – “A Detroit Pistons blog with completely fair and unbiased opinions of 29 of the Association’s 30 teams.” We’re going to live that truth with writers delivering blistering truth bombs that may or may not resemble reality all week. There are only two rules:

  1. No writing about the Detroit Pistons
  2. No doing any research in support of your argument – it all had to come from the gut.

Last year the Raptors won their first NBA Championship. This year another franchise will get its first.

I think. We’re not allowed to look it up. The Jazz haven’t ever won it before, right?

When the Jazz pushed their chips to the middle of the table on Mike Conley, they did it at just the right time. There’s no clear best team. The Lakers are the favorites to win the title and DBB’s Chris Daniels made a great case that they’re going to be awful.

But it’s not going to be the Clippers that knock them off. Not the Warriors proving rumors of their demise being premature (though...yeah, they kinda are). I’d love to see the Nuggets be the team that makes the jump from Good Team to Champ and I think there’s a chance they make it. But the best bet is the Jazz.

One of their strengths is their stability. They know what they’ve got going for them, they know where they need to compensate. And their big acquisitions complement perfectly.

Mike Conley is the right kind of point guard to run this team. Sure, they might have been able to get Chris Paul for less. And Paul might be the better player on paper. But Conley has the demeanor where he is capable of being The Guy, but doesn’t have to be. He can still get Mitchell his touches, but will reduce their over-usage of him. And even though he’s never won a title, he’s always been right there. He runs really good teams and this is the best, most balanced squad he’s run since Ohio State.

They already had an awesome floor spacer in Joe Inglis and adding Bojan Bogdanovic is just awesome.

But it was the addition of Ed Davis that really got me thinking.

We’re in a day in the league where offensive efficiency is the most important thing, and it takes some real thinking to set yourself apart on that front. The Warriors did it around shooting. The Rockets have done it with their shot spectrum. The Jazz are doing it through possessions.

Ricky Rubio is a good point guard. But he turns the ball over too much. Next to Mitchell, who also turns the ball over too much, the turnover department was never going to be a strength. But Conley has always been a low turnover guy.

And Ed Davis is a beast on the offensive glass. Of course, with Rudy Gobert being one of the best rebounders in the league, it seems like they might be on to something strategically.

On a team built around Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell, they’re never going to be the Warriors or the Rockets. So what can they be?

They can be the best defense in the league. And they can combine that with an offense that out-possessions you to death.

They limit turnovers, which also limits fast break opportunities. Then give an offense that’s perfect for a half court game. A game managing point guard, a dynamic shooting guard, wings with toughness that can stretch the floor. Then on a miss, be the best at creating another chance at that half court set.

It makes a lot of sense. In a year when the top teams are just betting on throwing as much talent as possible out there regardless of fit, I like the chances for the team that has plenty of talent but also a very thoughtful, well-defined, and intelligent approach.

Plus, Quinn Snyder is really good.

I think there’s a case that you can make a similar case for the Nuggets being the best team to bet on for the 2020 Championship. But Quinn Snyder is the difference. Mike Malone isn’t bad. But Snyder is just really good. He pushes them over the top for me.

We’re not allowed to write about the Pistons in the hot take articles. Well. Ahem. Fortunately that restriction isn’t placed on the comment section below.