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Utah Jazz blown out by OKC, but remain in playoff hunt

Published March 14, 2013 7:31 am

Jazz sluggish at start, ready to brawl at end of another road loss.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Oklahoma City • DeMarre Carroll insists the Utah Jazz are "in the hunt."

So was Bambi's mom.

The playoffs remain within reach for a Jazz team that has done everything imaginable to keep it from being so. But no loss, not even Wednesday's 110-87 beatdown against the defending-conference champion Thunder counts more than the others when it comes to the standings.

In regards to the suffocating weight it places on a team, well, that might be a different matter.

After watching his listless team get destroyed by Oklahoma City, coach Tyrone Corbin questioned the effort from his starters, who were outscored 59-26 by the Thunder in front of a sellout crowd at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Of his second unit, which didn't fare much better, Corbin spat, "At least they played hard."

Four nights had passed since the Jazz were manhandled in New York, losing by 29 points to the Knicks.

"That's very concerning, not just scoring double figures," Corbin said, "but it's the way we played."

No Jazz starter scored in double figures as the Jazz were led in scoring by 20 points from Gordon Hayward, although most of those came after the game was well out of hand.

Locker rooms are sacred places in the NBA, a safe place for honest words and sharp evaluations. Asked what Corbin's message was to a team that lost for the eighth time in 10 games and was blown out on the road for the second time in four days, Al Jefferson said, "I don't think there was no message. Chewing our ass out."

Paul Millsap, who stood next to Jefferson, chimed in.

"You ask him what the message was?" Millsap said. "He said it. It was his message."

Oh, brother.

Even on a night there was not much to say, what Corbin said was pointed.

"We needed a big win," Corbin said. "I didn't think we gave our best effort in the first half to start off."

The Jazz were outscored 21-9 in the second quarter and had their worst first half of the season, scoring just 29 points. With Kevin Durant struggling — he had just eight points at halftime — the Jazz failed to capitalize, shooting just 22.7 percent before halftime.

"We have to understand that this is an important game for us, and it should hurt us," Carroll said. "But we can't dwell on it. We just got to come back on Saturday and pick up a win at home."

The Jazz remain half a game behind the Los Angeles Lakers for the eighth spot in the Western Conference playoff chase, thanks to a Lakers loss in Atlanta.

The Jazz have built this season, like always, on an inside-out style of play anchored by Jefferson and Millsap.

Not against the Thunder.

"They had us on the perimeter all game long," Corbin said.

At halftime, the Jazz were being outscored 18-6 in the paint.

The Jazz fought back in the second half, which is not to say that they made a charge for the lead. They quite literally nearly started fights.

Carroll railroaded Durant on a fast break, drawing a flagrant foul and nearly igniting a brawl. Later, after Hasheem Thabeet fouled Hayward with a shot to the throat, Marvin Williams and Enes Kanter both received technicals for pushing Thabeet.

"That's good," Jefferson told Kanter in the locker room. "You stood up for the team."

Later, Hayward picked up a technical.

"We were trying to be tough later on," Hayward said. "But we've got to make sure we're tough in the beginning of the game. We can't let them push us around like that."

boram@sltrib.com

Twitter: @tribjazz —

Highlights

O The Jazz shoot a season-low 35 percent from the field and commit 20 turnovers.

• Three Jazz players receive technical fouls.

• Oklahoma City outscores the Jazz 21-9 in the second quarter. Thunder 110, Jazz 87

FG FT Reb

Utah Min M-A M-A O-T A PF Pts

Carroll 19:05 0-3 0-0 0-0 1 4 0

Millsap 19:33 1-5 5-8 3-7 1 3 7

Jefferson 24:12 4-13 0-0 2-7 1 2 8

M Wllms 21:09 2-7 0-0 0-2 3 3 5

Foye 18:03 2-7 0-0 0-1 1 1 6

Favors 24:30 3-6 0-0 2-3 2 4 6

Burks 12:25 2-8 2-2 2-2 1 1 7

Hayward 27:53 6-14 7-8 1-1 3 1 20

MaWlms 23:43 2-5 0-0 0-5 2 0 4

Kanter 23:10 3-6 6-6 2-5 0 4 12

Watson 19:04 2-4 5-6 1-2 6 1 9

Evans 4:26 1-1 1-3 0-0 0 1 3

Murphy 2:47 0-1 0-0 0-0 0 0 0

Totals 240:00 28-80 26-33 13-35 21 25 87

Percentages: FG .350, FT .788. 3-Point Goals: 5-15, .333 (Foye 2-4, M. Williams 1-1, Burks 1-2, Hayward 1-6, Watson 0-1, Ma.Williams 0-1). Team Rebounds: 6. Team Turnovers: 20 (25 PTS). Blocked Shots: 6 (Favors 5, Jefferson). Turnovers: 18 (M. Williams 4, Foye 2, Jefferson 2, Kanter 2, Millsap 2, Watson 2, Carroll, Favors, Hayward, Murphy). Steals: 13 (Millsap 3, Ma.Williams 2, M. Williams 2, Carroll, Evans, Foye, Hayward, Kanter, Watson). Technical Fouls: Ma.Williams, 11:46 fourth Kanter, 11:46 fourth Hayward, 10:23 fourth.

Flagrant Fouls: Carroll, 5:47 third.

FG FT Reb

OK C Min M-A M-A O-T A PF Pts

Durant 28:54 7-13 8-9 0-10 0 2 23

Ibaka 25:31 4-6 2-2 2-3 0 4 10

Perkins 26:38 0-2 0-0 0-3 0 4 0

Westbrk 28:08 6-11 7-9 1-7 9 0 19

Sefolsha 26:02 2-4 2-2 1-4 1 2 7

Martin 22:32 5-10 4-4 0-2 1 1 15

Collison 19:21 2-3 2-3 1-6 5 2 6

Fisher 19:04 4-5 0-0 0-0 1 4 10

Jackson 19:52 4-8 2-2 2-6 2 2 12

Thabeet 14:30 0-2 0-0 3-4 0 5 0

Brewer 4:44 2-3 0-0 1-2 1 0 4

Jones 4:44 1-2 2-2 0-1 0 1 4

Totals 240:00 37-69 29-33 11-48 20 27 110

Percentages: FG .536, FT .879. 3-Point Goals: 7-16, .438 (Fisher 2-3, Jackson 2-4, Durant 1-2, Sefolosha 1-2, Martin 1-4, Westbrook 0-1). Team Rebounds: 6. Team Turnovers: 25 (22 PTS). Blocked Shots: 7 (Durant 2, Collison, Ibaka, Sefolosha, Thabeet, Westbrook). Turnovers: 24 (Durant 8, Westbrook 5, Perkins 4, Fisher 3, Ibaka 2, Jackson, Thabeet). Steals: 9 (Collison 3, Ibaka, Jackson, Jones, Martin, Sefolosha, Westbrook). Technical Fouls: Westbrook, 5:47 third Defensive three second, 11:49 fourth Thabeet, 11:46 fourth.

Flagrant Fouls: Thabeet, 11:46 fourth.

Utah 19 9 28 31 — 87

Oklahoma City 29 21 29 31 — 110

Attendance • 18,203

Time • 2:34.

Officials • Scott Foster, Leroy Richardson, John Goble.