Marcus Morris impressed with Rudy Gobert, but not much else on Jazz

Marcus Morris Sr., LA Clippers. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Swinger-USA TODAY Sports
Marcus Morris Sr., LA Clippers. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Swinger-USA TODAY Sports /

Marcus Morris Sr. was very critical of the Utah Jazz after their win over the LA Clippers on Wednesday.

The only player he was complimentary of was Rudy Gobert, who did indeed have a great showing against the Clips. Gobert was eight of ten for 20 points, 17 rebounds, three assists, and two blocks.

Last season against the Clippers in the playoffs, Gobert was left out to dry by many of his teammates on defense. The rest of the roster had a really tough time hanging with the Clippers’ perimeter players, and Gobert was forced to try to close out around the outside from all the way back in the paint. Morris believes that the Jazz are actually that same team as they were back in the playoffs, despite getting the better of Clip City this time.

"“Yeah, they’re still the same team. Ain’t nothing changed,” said Morris. “(Gobert) protects all of them. None of them really can defend. Just funnel it to him and it’s tough to — he’s a great player and he does a great job of anticipation, staying down, being real solid. So you know who they are.”"

Marcus Morris didn’t hold back when it came to criticizing almost the whole Jazz roster after they played the LA Clippers.

Marcus Morris certainly has a good perspective on this due to the type of player he is on the LA Clippers. Being a versatile guy who plays both out along the perimeter at times throughout games, as well as a guy who plays inside as a big at times (especially on defense), he has the full view of who Rudy Gobert is as a player.

It’s interesting that Morris was vocal about this, because during those Western Conference Semifinals last year, many NBA fans criticized Gobert. They thought the poor Jazz defense was his fault. The truth was of course that Gobert was being forced to pick up the slack for the underperforming rest of the Jazz defensive attack, as Morris pointed out.

Some may argue that Morris was incorrect, however, in that it was still going on Wednesday night, as the Jazz won by 21 points. Regardless, star Jazz SG/SF Donovan Mitchell acknowledged why he believes the Jazz receive criticism like this:

“We’ve done a lot well in the regular season,” said Mitchell. “We are a pretty solid team, now we gotta go out there and prove it and then this will stop.”

He very well may be right. The Jazz have been a playoff team for quite some time now, but can never seem to put together a deep run. That’s even with them playing against a Clipper team last year that saw Kawhi Leonard go down in Game 4 of the series (after they were up 2-1 at that point).

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Last year was their chance to beat a shorthanded Clipper team (remember they were without Ibaka as well then), and they couldn’t get it done. So, Mitchell may be right. Perhaps they’ll finally make a deep run and get that monkey off of their backs, that way they’ll be respected the way they’d like to after they win 124-103 games in the future.