Practice notes — Harris, Kirilenko out; Corbin speaks with Jefferson, team
Notes from a morning media session prior to a Jazz workout at the team practice facility.
Utah's Devin Harris (hamstring) and Andrei Kirilenko (knee) will not practice due to injuries.
Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin said that he plans to speak with Al Jefferson and the team during two separate speeches about Jefferson's last-minute ejection Saturday during a home loss to Dallas.
"It's just unfortunate," Corbin said. "That's out of his character. So we just want to make sure it's not an ongoing thing."
Corbin was uncertain about Harris' return. Harris said Saturday he is not sure when he will take the court, but believes the date will likely be sometime next week. Corbin acknowledged that having Harris match up against speedy Washington rookie point guard John Wall while recovering from a hamstring pull is not an ideal scenario.
"This is how you can get hurt," Corbin said. "You come back, you face a fast guy like him, and now you make a quick move and you can pull it again. So we'll gauge that, and he'll know where he is. We'll practice today and see what we get from him in shootaround tomorrow, and see how he is and if he's on the floor."
Corbin said that Kirilenko is on crutches and has been unable to sit behind the bench for Utah's last two games because of the nature of his treatment. Kirilenko received attention again this morning prior to practice, but was not made available to the media.
Corbin plans to stick with the same lineup Monday against the Wizards. Changes will likely only be made if Harris and/or Kirilenko are available. Corbin will not go young with the first unit or make a drastic overhaul because he does not want his team to think that he has surrendered the season.
"We're still plugging at it," Corbin said. "We want to continue to develop. … We're a professional club. All these guys are pros and they want to compete."
Jazz center Mehmet Okur put up short-range shots before practice but was not jumping.
Corbin on what is he looking for during Utah's last eight games: Continued development for the entire team. We want to try and create some kind of identity as to who we are and how we're going to play every night you step on the floor. You're going to have to compete against us. We're going to be a tough-nosed both offensive and defensive team. And we've had some glimpses of it; we haven't had a steady dose of where we're trying to get to yet. We're trying to improve some of the rotation stuff on the defensive end. Offensively, we've got to get better at trusting each other and executing on the end of the floor. Just that: Continue to play hard, continue to develop and create the identity that we're trying to get to.
Staying positive: You've got to be honest about who you are and where you are. And you can't be satisfied if you're not where you want to be, and I'm not satisfied with where we are at right now as a group of guys, as a team. But we've been through a lot, and the guys are still trying to fight it out. You can be too easy and not get better, and you can be too difficult and turn the guys the other way, too. It have to be a balance. I played for a long time. I have a pretty good feel for where guys are in that way. But it can eat at you. You've got to try and push them. Sometimes you have to say some things they may not like. But it is what it is.
— Brian T. Smith
© Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.