In a matchup between the current fourth-best team in the West and the fifth-best in the East, the Utah Jazz will visit the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden. Two teams with 4-3 records should provide a good game among the many blowouts in the early weeks of the 2020-21 NBA season.
The Utah Jazz are coming off a win over the San Antonio Spurs that was followed by a blowout loss to the Brooklyn Nets to start a seven-game road trip.
On the other side, the impressive Tim Thibodeau-coached New York Knicks took two consecutive wins on the road against the Indiana Pacers and the Atlanta Hawks.
Utah Jazz vs New York Knicks Prediction: Combined starting 5
After going 3-1 in a four-game road trip, the New York Knicks will now have three consecutive games at home.
The New York Knicks have beaten the Milwaukee Bucks, Cleveland Cavaliers, Indiana Pacers, and Atlanta Hawks in the 2020-21 NBA season.
Those four teams have winning records in the early stages of the season, and the Knicks were solid against them.
Julius Randle has commanded the New York Knicks offensively and is having an impressive season. For the Utah Jazz, Donovan Mitchell has had a slow start offensively.
Nonetheless, Mike Conley and Jordan Clarkson have supported him well, and Utah has registered a couple of impressive victories over the Portland Trail Blazers and the LA Clippers.
Here is our combined starting five from the Utah Jazz vs New York Knicks matchup.
Point Guard - Mike Conley (Utah Jazz)
Mike Conley is having a strong year for the Utah Jazz. The point guard is shooting the ball better than ever before. Of course, it is early in the season, but Conley has made 46% of his field goals, and that would be a career-high for him if the season ended today.
Although Conley averaged just 14 points per game last year and made 40% of his shots, he has bounced back and is scoring at a better rate this season. He is averaging 18.6 points and five assists per game on shooting splits of 46/45/76.
Shooting Guard - Donovan Mitchell (Utah Jazz)
Donovan Mitchell is coming off the biggest NBA offseason of his career after signing a five-year, $195 million extension with the Utah Jazz. However, his start to the 2020-21 NBA season has been underwhelming.
He is a volume scorer, but his current percentages are not good enough. We can expect him to perform much better in the upcoming games, but he needs to pick up his pace.
Mitchell is averaging a team-high 21.7 points per game, but he has taken 138 field goals and has scored 152 points. He has been shooting at his usual rate from the three-point line (34%), but his overall field goals and free throws must improve.
Mitchell has made 38% of his field goals in this season (44% in his career) and 77% of his free throws (82% in his career). Against a New York Knicks' defense that ranks 12th in the NBA, he could have a good game.