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What to watch for March 3, 2021: Utah Jazz at Philadelphia 76ers

For the second time this season, the Utah Jazz and Philadelphia 76ers will match up in a battle of the top seeds in each conference.
Jordan Clarkson (00) shoots a three pointer during his 40-point performance against the Philadelphia 76ers

Jordan Clarkson (00) shoots a three pointer during his 40-point performance against the Philadelphia 76ers

The Utah Jazz fell for the third time in their last six games against the New Orleans Pelicans on Monday night. They will look to finish the first half of the season strong as they go head to head with the Philadelphia 76ers on Wednesday.

Jazz vs 76ers Throwback:

The Jazz hold the all-time lead against the 76ers 56-46 in the 102 games played between these two teams. 

On Monday February 15, 2021 Jordan Clarkson exploded for the Jazz, scoring 40-points in a 134-123 victory over the 76ers. He was the first player since Thurl Bailey in 1988 to come off the bench and score 40+ points while wearing a Jazz uniform. Clarkson also tied the franchise record for three pointers in a game during his phenomenal showing. Joe Ingles led the team with 5-assists while Rudy Gobert chipped in 2-blocks during Utah's win.

Key Players:

Rudy Gobert and Ben Simmons are the two players to watch out for during tonight's game. Not necessarily for offensive purposes, but more on the defensive side of the ball.

Rudy Gobert (27) attempts to block Ben Simmons (25) 

Rudy Gobert (27) attempts to block Ben Simmons (25) 

Gobert leads the Jazz with a 64.9% field goal percentage, 13.2-rebounds, and 2.7-blocks per game. He is coming off the back of a 5-block game against the Pelicans where he also registered 22-points and 9-rebounds.

Simmons leads the 76ers with 7.7-assists, and 1.6-steals per game. He is coming off of an 18-point, 6-rebound, 4-turnover game against the Indiana Pacers.

Fun Facts:

The Jazz will finish off the first half of the season in the uniform that they've worn the most so far this year, the home whites. Utah is 11-4 so far when wearing the 'Association' uniforms, and they will look to add another victory to the win column against the 76ers this evening. Last time out while wearing the white jerseys, the Jazz took a loss to the Miami Heat 116-124.

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There will be three people representing the Utah Jazz in the 2021 NBA All-Star game on March 7 in Atlanta, Georgia. First, Head Coach Quin Snyder will be leading Team LeBron as the coaching representative for the Western Conference. Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert will also take part in the All-Star Game, being named as reserve players early last week.

Mitchell will also take part in the Mountain Dew Three-Point Contest during All-Star Weekend. He will take on Zach Levine (Bulls), Devin Booker (Suns), Jayson Tatum (Celtics), Jaylen Brown (Celtics), and Stephen Curry (Warriors) during the contest.

Head Coach Quin Snyder has once again been named February's Western Conference Coach of the Month after leading the team to a 12-2 record. He led the Jazz to victory over teams like the Philadelphia 76ers, Milwaukee Bucks, Miami Heat, Los Angeles Lakers, and Los Angeles Clippers during that stretch.

Even though the Jazz suffered a loss against the New Orleans Pelicans, they remain in the top spot in the NBA. They currently have a 27-8 record and hold the edge over the Phoenix Suns by three and a half games, the Los Angeles Lakers by three and a half games, and the Los Angeles Clippers by four games in the Western Conference. They also lead the Philadelphia 76ers by four games, and the Brooklyn Nets by four and a half games in the Eastern Conference.

Philadelphia is 4-2 over their last six games with victories over the Chicago Bulls, Toronto Raptors, Dallas Mavericks, and the Indiana Pacers. Their losses have come against the Toronto Raptors and Cleveland Cavaliers. They are currently in first place in the Eastern Conference with a half game lead over the Brooklyn Nets.

It seems to be just before a game against the Jazz that Ben Simmons forgets about two-time Defensive Player of the Year and current favorite to win his third DPOY, Rudy Gobert. Once again, Simmons said after a game against the Dallas Mavericks, "I do feel like I'm the best defensive player in the league," he continued, "I can guard one through five." Lets be honest, Simmons is a solid defender. A top defender in the league even. But he's still got a ways to go before anyone outside of Philadelphia will legitimately consider him the best defender in the NBA.

Ben Simmons (25) fouls Jordan Clarkson (00) as Clarkson shoots a 3-pointer

Ben Simmons (25) fouls Jordan Clarkson (00) as Clarkson shoots a 3-pointer

Rookie Udoka Azubuike is still the only name on the Utah Jazz injury report. Azubuike has been ruled out 'indefinitely' after suffering a severe ankle sprain while playing for the Salt Lake City Stars. Tobias Harris is the only player listed on the 76ers injury report. Harris is listed as questionable for Wednesday night's game against the Jazz with a knee injury. Look for both squads to have a full and healthy roster for tonight's game pending load management issues.

How to Consume:

The Utah Jazz will head north to take on the Philadelphia 76ers on Wednesday night. Jazz fans can catch tonight's game on AT&T SportsNet, and on the radio on 97.5FM or 1280AM. Tipoff will be at 5pm MST at the Wells Fargo Center.

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