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Thurl Bailey in Jazz uniform
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Thurl Bailey predicts fans will see a different Jazz team in Game 2

FILE: Thurl Bailey #41, Power Forward for the Utah Jazz during their NBA Pacific Division basketball game on 25th February 1990 at the Great Western Forum arena in Inglewood, Los Angeles, California, United States. The Jazz won the game 104 - 103. (Photo by Tim DeFrisco/Allsport/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY — When the Jazz face off against the Memphis Grizzlies for game 2 of their NBA playoffs series Wednesday, former player Thurl Bailey predicts you will see a much different team. 

The Utah Jazz lost game 1 Sunday by 3 points. 

Thurl Bailey, now an analyst and the host of a KSL Podcast, believes the team will come back stronger than before. 

“This is the playoffs,” Bailey said on KSL’s UnRivaled on KSL NewsRadio Tuesday night. “A whole different mindset, right? The same time. Not a whole lot’s gonna change. It’s a game, dude. You get out there and you play long enough, you thrive off the energy, you create the energy yourself. It’s going to be a totally different Jazz team.” 

Thurl Bailey on the Mitchell effect

Guard Donovan Mitchell, who missed game 1 as well the end of the regular season with an ankle injury, returns to the floor Wednesday. Bailey said that’s good news. 

“I think Donovan is — he’s at the stage of his career now where I think he can — he can survey, right? He’s become a better playmaker, so it’s not just, you know, one-on-one, get to the basket or just pull up. I think he’s been able to gauge when he needs to assert himself more,” Bailey said. “I expect him to stay with the system, right? and then assert himself when he needs to on both ends of the court, not try to, you know, do it all at once.” 

According to Thurl Bailey, the return of Donovan Mitchell could mean renewed energy for the team as a whole. 

“The greatest story sometimes is how you bounce back from it,” he said. 

But Bailey doesn’t think Mitchell is the only reason the Jazz lost game 1 to the Grizzlies. 

“They distracted the Jazz and really took advantage of it,” Bailey said. 

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