Giving up a 21-point second half lead is part of Jazz’s preseason plan
It's a good thing that the games don't matter yet, or the Utah Jazz would have a lot of questions after coughing up a 21-point lead to fall to the Portland Trail Blazers over the weekend.
Instead, because it's the preseason, that come-from-ahead defeat was somewhat part of the plan for Utah. Rudy Gobert, Gordon Hayward and Derrick Favors were resting, and Coach Quin Snyder chose to ride with some of the players who are fighting for a spot on the Jazz's final regular season roster in the fourth quarter to see how they handled the pressure. That was a conscious decision by Snyder, as he told reporters after the game (via the Deseret Morning News):
Unfortunately for Bryce Cotton, Treveon Graham and Chris Johnson, the Blazers stuck with their regular rotation players down the stretch. The young backcourt went just 1-for-16 from the floor.
But the Jazz have bigger goals than a preseason victory against the Trail Blazers. Snyder made the right choice, even if it ended in a loss.
“The fourth quarter is what the preseason’s about, finding out about your team,” said Snyder. “We have some guys who have been busting their tails in practice and you want to give them an opportunity to play.