SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Being a fan of a sports team can bring out some crazy thought experiments when looking at your favorite team compared to a rival. In most years, the Utah Jazz are looking up at the Los Angeles Lakers wanting to have that level of success which consists of multiple NBA titles, MVPs and a whole lot of publicity.
Now, it is the other way around, for once, and the Jazz have the best record in the NBA and should take home the coach of the year, sixth man of the year, defensive player of the year, and if not for Donovan Mitchell’s injury, an outside shot of earning the league’s MVP.
Despite the Utah Jazz having all of that, there is some satisfaction to seeing the Lakers sink this year. They have had injuries to LeBron James and Anthony Davis and with those setbacks, Los Angeles is struggling to avoid the play-in tournament.
James recently bashed the idea of the play-in game as his Lakers are currently in sixth out West and could very well be in a one-and-done situation.
“Whoever came up with that (expletive) needs to be fired,” James said.
Jazz fans have to love it when James is in a tough spot and venting about something he actually liked.
Last season he was in favor of a play-in tournament, but that was because the Lakers were not involved. That is exactly what KSL Sports’ Alex Kirry points out with James’ about-face on the subject and calls him out.
“Last year LeBron said, ‘I think it’s great. I mean, it’s great for the game. I think it’s an amazing thing,’ and then this year, you have him over this past weekend saying whoever came up with this play in tournament needs to get fired,” Kirry said. “He’s not messing around. He’s not, like, making a joke about it.”
Of course, James loved the idea of possibly facing a team in the playoffs who was just coming off an emotional win or go home game for the right to just make the playoffs and face the top seed.
“When they came out with the play-in tournament last year. LeBron said it: ‘When you have your teams out there fighting for this thing.’ He throws teams out teams like the Pelicans, you got your Kings, you got your whoever’s you know a bunch of teams he is not thinking about as they are the No. 1 seed,” Kirry said. “It was 100 percent him just doing the doublespeak thing that superstars do and expecting the superstar treatment of. Well, LeBron says we shouldn’t be doing this.”
This is quite common when MVPs and elite players speak they expect some sort of change or have the masses agree with him. Not many are crying for the Lakers and James struggling this season.
Lakers Failure Or Jazz Success?
Seeing the Lakers and James suffer gets a lot of Jazz fans excited and sometimes it seems that seeing the Lakers struggling and not playing well can be more fun than seeing the Jazz play extremely well and winning. This year both could be on the table as the Jazz are primed to earn home-court throughout the playoffs.
KSL Sports’ Scott Mitchell, who is known to have some bold and stupid picks, put out one of his more interesting thoughts by suggesting he gets more satisfaction with the Lakers playing poorly than the Jazz winning.
“It’s kind of enjoyable. We’re talking about the Lakers having to play a play-in game, and that’s awesome. That may be the best discussion we’ve ever had on our show ever,” Mitchell said. “I would love if the Lakers had to play in that little play-in tournament and let them fight it out. They plan and then they lose, I would give up a championship for the Utah Jazz to see that.”
That is an extremely bold take but there are some fans that would agree with Mitchell’s take and rather see their rival go down in flames and their team not win a title.
However, this year it is very possible that both could happen with the Lakers not even making the playoffs, or losing early, and then the Utah Jazz take home the title and hoist up high the Larry O’Brien trophy.
Both of those things happen would be a great way for this season to conclude.