Mike Conley admits he was shook by his horrible start with Utah
Mike Conley was thrilled to join the Jazz this summer, but his sluggish start to the season gave him fits, according to a report from Sam Amick of The Athletic.
The Jazz acquired Conley in a trade with the Memphis Grizzlies on July 6. Utah dealt away several players in the deal, including Grayson Allen, Kyle Korver and Jae Crowder.
Conley was off the mark in his first regular season appearance with the Jazz — a 100-95 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder. He logged 27 minutes, scoring just five points on 1-of-16 shooting from the field (0-of-6 from beyond the arc), though he did have five assists.
Conley’s production has increased quite a bit since then. In fact, he had 19 points, four assists and four steals in last week’s 102-101 loss to the Kings and led the Jazz against the Clippers, scoring 29.
The former Ohio State standout credits his teammates for supporting him through the transition:
“Man, it was a lonely situation,” Conley told The Athletic. “I was so excited to join this team, and I think everybody was excited about everything. And we were still winning and doing all these things, but I’m like, ‘I know I’m way better than what’s happening,’ and it just felt like the harder I tried the worse I got. I just kept thinking, ‘This is not me. This is not me. I don’t want the Jazz nation to think this is me.’ I was constantly fighting that – every day. And my teammates were supporting me through it all.
“I had a game the other night (against the Clippers on Oct. 30, where he had 29 points on 11 of 17 shooting with five assists) where I let it go and got past it and now I’m able to just feel my way through it again and I feel like myself. Those first four games or so, it was just something different every game.”
Conley and the Jazz are currently riding a two-game losing streak. Their next shot at claiming a victory comes on Wednesday night, as they’re scheduled to host the Sixers. Tip-of inside Vivint Smart Home Arena is set for 9:00 p.m. ET.