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Aussies in NBA: Joe Ingles is the glue that binds the Utah Jazz
To say that Joe Ingles has won the respect of his teammates and the entire Utah Jazz organisation over the last year and a bit would be an understatement. Ingles not only has the respect and trust of his teammates and coaches, he is genuinely loved by them.
The way that Ingles goes about his basketball has always been the same; the team comes first. This mentality has made Slo-Mo Joe a fan favourite and also a favourite of Coach Synder's.
Per Desert News' Jody Genessy:
To have him out there, he greases the skids, so to speak. He’s the glue.
Joe's been playing good... He's done a nice job for us."- Coach Quin Snyder
These words from Snyder speak volumes of what Utah sees in Ingles and the belief they have in him. Being the 'glue guy' isn't the flashiest role on a team, nor is it one that will create a large fanfare, but those following Ingles closely know just how important his role on this young team is.
Although Ingles' minutes have slightly dropped from last season, his efficiency has sky-rocketed. In his rookie campaign, Ingles shot 41.5% from the field and averaged 5 points per game. In 6 games this season, Ingles is shooting 58.3% and averaging 6.2 points per game.
This extremely healthy shooting percentage is due to Ingles understanding his game and knowing what he needs to do to make the team better. He understands that taking 10 shots a night isn't going to necessarily make the Jazz better, but if he takes 5 shots a night and takes care of the ball, the Jazz are a much better unit.
Taking care of the ball has been a focus for Ingles and Snyder spoke to Genessy about the work that Slo-Mo Joe has put into that area of his game.
He’s got a lot of pride as a player. I think his focus in that area... it has been infectious.”
The work has paid off, and Ingles is still yet to commit a single turnover in 110 minutes of playing time. Don't for a second think this streak is due to him being passive when handling the ball or being too careful. Passes like this one disprove that notion.
Watch Joe Ingles lull Harkless to sleep with this back-dribble... pic.twitter.com/3xUmrCkfNq
— Hardwood Knocks (@HardwoodKnocks) November 5, 2015
Ingles will face off against fellow Aussie, Matthew Dellavedova on Wednesday when Utah travel to Cleveland in their first game of a four game road trip out East.