Commentary

Boozer makes Millsap, Jazz stronger

Utah's star forward isn't back to his old self yet, but his presence still matters

Originally Published: March 12, 2009
By Kevin Pelton | Basketball Prospectus

It sounds like a math problem with no solution: How do you add a player with neutral plus/minus and take a team from good to great? But that's exactly what the Utah Jazz managed to do in ripping off 12 straight wins (before Wednesday night's loss to the Hawks) to quietly emerge as the NBA's hottest team.

On Feb. 23, already four games into that streak, the Jazz got Carlos Boozer back from a knee injury that cost him 44 games. Boozer is not yet back to his All-Star form, although he has rebounded well since returning (8.9 rpg). He is still finding his scoring touch, having shot 42.5 percent from the field over the past eight games and averaging 15.8 points per 40 minutes -- down from 54.7 percent shooting and 24.2 points per 40 a season ago.


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