Utah Jazz: Defending Western champs ready to host Utah Jazz
Utah Jazz • Carroll will try to defend Durant first.
Published: November 30, 2012 07:07PM
Updated: December 1, 2012 05:41PM

Oklahoma City • The Jazz have traded one Williams for another (in a lineup sense), will start a player who at one point this season played a total three minutes in six games. They rarely win on the road. And they get to try to turn those ingredients into a recipe for a win against one of the league’s best teams.

Yes, much fun awaits the Jazz on Friday night in Oklahoma City.

The Jazz (9-7) play the defending Western Conference champion Thunder (12-4) at Chesapeake Energy Arena at 6 p.m. Mountain. The game will be televised on ROOT Sports and can be heard on 1280 AM/97.5 FM.

Mo Williams returns from a foot injury that cost him three games, but starting small forward Marvin Williams will not dress as he continues to nurse headaches tied to a hard fall he took in Wednesday’s win in New Orleans.

DeMarre Carroll, in and out of the rotation all season, will start in place of Marvin Williams.

“He likes to take on the challenge of guarding top guys in this league,” Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin said, “and relishing the moment.”

Carroll will be the first man up against Kevin Durant, who is second in the NBA with 26.6 points per game.

The Thunder present perhaps the biggest challenge of the season for the Jazz. And while the Jazz have done little this season to demonstrate they can beat a top team on the road — they’re just 3-7 away from EnergySolutions Arena — it would be a major statement if they managed to defeat the Thunder.

boram@sltrib.com

Twitter: @tribjazz