Give a round of applause to the Utah Jazz whose remarkable 10-game win streak finally came to a close on Friday against the New Orleans Pelicans in an overtime thriller.
The win streak lasted three weeks – a stretch of 20 days that catapulted Utah from sixth place in the West to second place in the blink of an eye.
The biggest variable from this surge came from Aussie forward Joe Ingles who was inserted back into the starting lineup. Since becoming an every day starter – mostly due to Mike Conley Jr.’s hamstring injury – the Jazz are 16-4. Although Ingles started all 82 games for Utah last season, the offseason acquisition of Conley resulted in a move to the bench. After getting off to a slow start in his new role, Ingles re-emerged since shifting back into the starting lineup.
Before completely turning the page on the win streak, here’s a look back at the biggest Joe Ingles stats that sparked Utah’s run up the Western Conference standings.
All stats are during Utah’s win streak from Dec. 26 to Jan. 14.
21.8 – Ingles’ net rating
On paper, Ingles rejoining the starting lineup proved as the underlying variable that differed from the team’s slow start to the season. It’s good to see that the stats back that up, too.
Ingles was amazing on both sides of the ball over the 10-game streak and his 21.8 net rating shows he was the most impactful player on the team. The Jazz boasted an impressive offensive rating of 122.0 and a defensive rating of 108.4 during this stretch.
While those are both solid numbers, the difference with Ingles on the court and off the court is jaw-dropping.
We could stop right here and Ingles’ influence on the win streak would be well represented. But there’s two more impressive stats to unpack.
52.9 – Ingles’ 3-point percentage
There’s a lot of green circles on that right wing.
Ingles was a sniper during the Jazz’s 10-game win streak, shooting 52.9% from 3 converting 36 of his 68 attempts.
He wasn’t just the best perimeter shooter on his team during that stretch – he was the best perimeter shooter in the NBA. Of the 52 players that attempted at least 50 3-pointers during Utah’s win streak, Ingles shot the highest percentage in the NBA with 52.9%.
Considering Ingles shot 30.0% from 3 over the first 20 games of the season, this is a very encouraging thing to see if you’re a Jazz fan. As a career 41.0% 3-point shooter, Ingles has finally found his stroke this season, bringing his 3-point percentage up to 42.5% after this stretch of games.
6.0 – Ingles assist/turnover ratio
60 assists. 10 turnovers.
Ingles had the ball in his hands a lot over the course of Utah’s win streak and very rarely did he cough it up. Just 10 times over the course of 10 games, while dishing out an impressive 60 assists for a 6.0 assists per game average.
We saw what point forward Ingles was capable of last season when he averaged 7.5 assists per game after the All-Star break when Utah’s guards started dropping like flies due to injury. His opportunities to play that point forward role dwindled at the start of the season with the addition of Conley, along with Mitchell spending more time at point guard, but when the opportunity presented itself to retake that role, Ingles made the most of it.
Ingles was one of 12 players in the NBA to tally 60 or more assists over the past three weeks, placing himself among elite company with some of the best playmakers in the NBA – Luka Doncic, LeBron James, Ricky Rubio and Chris Paul, to name a few.
None of the 12 premier passers on that list had an assist/turnover ratio above 4.0 besides Ingles during that stretch. Granted, a number of those players’ usage rates are higher than Ingles, but it still doesn’t slight his production.
Ingles play over this win streak has put head coach Quin Snyder in a real tough spot to figure out the starting lineup once Conley is healthy enough to return, that’s for certain.
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