The Utah Jazz have out done all expectations this season. They weren’t supposed to recover after losing their franchise player to free agency by winning 48 games. They weren’t supposed make the playoffs. They weren’t supposed to beat Oklahoma City in the first round. They weren’t supposed to win any western conference semi final games on the road. They did all those things.
One thing they won’t be doing on Tuesday is playing with Ricky Rubio or Dante Exum.
Rubio and Exum have already been ruled out for Game 5 in Houston, both with hamstring injuries. Utah will continue to rely on the next man up philosophy like they are so used to doing.
In Game 4 Dante Exum had a few more bright moments scoring seemingly on anyone he wanted off the dribble. Unfortunately on his last drive he visibly aggravated his hamstring and headed straight for the locker room where he eventually had to be helped in.
Rubio, dealing with the hamstring since Game 6 against the Thunder was given a time table of ten days. He had been upgraded prior to Game 4 to questionable. With the time coming up on ten days, Jazz fans are feeling disappointed that they won’t be seeing their starting point guard in Game 5.
All fingers are pointing towards the Houston Rockets wrapping up the series on Tuesday as they are looking across the playoff bracket expecting their next round opponent to be doing the same. If Utah can somehow pull out another win in Houston short handed, and Rubio is able to return for Game 6 you never know… Crazier things have happened.
A healthy Ricky Rubio may not even be the deciding factor in a series like this against the multi-talented Houston Rockets anyway. I do expect the Jazz to go out fighting regardless.
Featured image credit: slcdunk.com
Video credit: Youtube.com/blackninja