Curry, Warriors juke past JazzBy The Sports Xchange | The SportsXchange – Thu, Dec 27, 2012 1:20 AM EST
SALT LAKE CITY -- The Golden State Warriors made some new believers Wednesday night. Stephen Curry scored 23 points, grabbed eight rebounds and handed out seven assists to lead the Warriors to an impressive 94-83 victory over the Utah Jazz. David Lee added 18 points and nine rebounds, and Jarrett Jack and Klay Thompson each chipped in 15 points off the bench for the Warriors, who improved to 19-10 overall and 11-6 on the road. "They just competed better than we did and executed better," Jazz guard Gordon Hayward said. "I think their zone flustered us a little bit and got us out of what we wanted to do. We need to do better and be able to attack the zone and finish plays, but they just beat us tonight." Golden State led by as many as 22 points en route to the blowout win at EnergySolutions Arena. "It was a great team effort," Warriors coach Mark Jackson said. "We defended and held them to a season low with 83 points, and we paid attention to detail and played our pace." Al Jefferson scored 18 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to top Utah. The Jazz, who went 2-2 on a pre-Christmas trip, fell to 15-15 overall and 9-3 at home. Paul Millsap contributed 14 points for Utah, and reserve center Enes Kanter had 10 points, but no one else scored in double digits for the usually balanced Jazz. Utah's Jamaal Tinsley, filling in for injured starting point guard Mo Williams, did not score, and he dished out only four assists. "We've got to look at the film and go back to work," Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin said. "It was a sluggish effort all night." Neither team shot well in the low-scoring contest, with Utah hitting only 38.6 percent of its shots and Golden State firing in at a 40.2 percent clip. However, the Warriors went 9-for-18 from 3-point range, and they outscored Utah 25-5 in transition. For Golden State, the victory was a much-needed boost of confidence after a demoralizing overtime loss to the Los Angeles Lakers on Saturday. "I think our team did a great job coming off of a loss and getting refocused," Lee said. "We had a couple of days to get away from the game. Those were some frustrating days -- all of us couldn't wait to get back on the court and play another game after our loss to L.A., a game which I thought we should have won." Golden State's quickness and outside shooting were too much for the flat-footed home team, which didn't practice the two previous days. Curry hit four of seven 3-point attempts, and Thompson and Jack each went 2-for-3 from long range. Golden State quickly responded to the Jazz scoring the first four points, taking a 24-19 lead after the first quarter and enjoying a 49-37 halftime lead. The Jazz showed a rare burst of energy with a 6-0 run in the third quarter, pulling within 62-53. That flicker was quickly extinguished by the Warriors, who scored six straight on back-to-back Lee buckets and two Jack free throws. Golden State kept that momentum, taking a 17-point advantage into the fourth quarter and then building a lead as big as 22. Utah made a late run in the fourth quarter, but it was far too late by that point. NOTES: Williams missed his second consecutive game with a severely sprained right thumb. He remains out indefinitely. ... Thompson had a personal issue to deal with, and he didn't arrive to Utah until 1 p.m. Wednesday. He still managed to get his usual nap in and rejoined the team in time for the game. ... Jackson played one season (2002-03) for the Jazz, averaging 4.7 points and 4.6 assists. ... Utah will receive Golden State's first-round pick unless that selection ends up in the top six of the lottery, which seems unlikely at this point. The Jazz got the selection from the Nets as part of the Deron Williams deal in 2011. ... Corbin on why he gave his team two days off on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day: "We needed some rest. ... It concerns you a little bit because you get out of your routine, but these guys have been great at responding." The Jazz returned from a four-game Eastern Conference trip early Monday morning.
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