When we look back on the 2021-22 NBA playoffs in the future, we will likely see it as a pivotal moment for the Utah Jazz. After years of being good in the regular season, and then really good, they saw their postseason dreams end in familiar fashion as they were dumped out of the competition by the Dallas Mavericks.
The fact that it was in the first round was bad. The fact that it was done by a Mavericks squad operating largely without Luka Doncic through injury was even worse. It left the organization in a situation whereby change not only seemed like an avenue to explore, but is actually a necessity as panic struck the franchise.
We now know with certainty that the Utah Jazz are a playoff team, but aren’t close to a championship contender.
As devastating as that sentence may sound to Jazz fans, it is not all bad. In Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert, they have two of the top 25 players in the NBA. Alongside one-time Sixth Man of the Year Jordan Clarkson, that is an enviable position to start. Certainly, a position that many other franchises, especially those in small markets, would like to be in.
Change also doesn’t guarantee success either, and that is why it is so scary. As things stand, the Jazz have something, it has just been found out one too many years in the postseason.