Postgame notes: Price the jokester; Kirilenko's blood; Hayward's shot
Notes following the Utah Jazz's 105-100 preseason victory over the Phoenix Suns on Tuesday evening at U.S. Airways Center.Strong game from Othyus Jeffers. Twelve points on 5-of-7 shooting. Jeffers started rough, turning the ball over and getting blown by on defense. A supportive talk from C.J. Miles followed. Then Jeffers got on track.Good all-around games from Andrei Kirilenko, Al Jefferson, Ronnie Price and Demetris Nichols.Second consecutive quiet night from Paul Millsap. As his numbers have gone down, Jefferson's have risen.Kirilenko acquired a bloody elbow in the first half. He was surprised by the small injury. More surprised by a random trail of blood on the court that left a couple kids absorbing the liquid with towels. He also gave Raja Bell and low five while laughing about the blood.Gordon Hayward is struggling to find his shot. He sank nearly everything he took during warmups, but appears to be forcing it during games. Got down on himself a couple times after misses.Price had his best game of the preseason. "He was a sparkplug," Miles said.Miles spent the postgame interview session with both knees iced and his feet in a cold tub. "I'm trying to get numb," Miles said.Jeremy Evans, Ryan Thompson, Nichols and Hayward went hard during warmups, working with assistant coach Scott Layden on shooting drills.Layden called deep corner 3-pointers "NBA layups."Miles, Nichols and Kyrylo Fesenko watched tape of Utah's recent win over Portland in the locker room before the game.Price is a jokester. The often quiet guard jokingly got grief from Jefferson about teasing his teammates and talking behind their backs.Jerry Sloan was asked by Scott Williams if he was happy with the team. "No," Sloan said. Then he started laughing.Fesenko and Kirilenko were reading books in separate corners of the locker room before the game. The Jazz were outrebounded (46-39), allowed 23 fast-break points, committed more personal fouls (29-27), shot for a lower percentage (43.8-45) and still won.Utah had 22 assists and just 14 turnovers.The Jazz shot only 23.5 percent (4 of 17) behind the 3-point line.OK night from Fesenko after a breakout performance. Sank a couple nice shots. Also picked up his second consecutive technical foul and blew some plays. Still, he grabbed a team-high six rebounds and stepped up in the second half.Sundiata Gaines did not play. Francisco Elson watched the game in street clothes.Earl Watson has yet to hit a field goal after three games. Again played the entire fourth quarter after sitting the first three.Kirilenko, Bell and Hayward were the first three substitutions.Jefferson and Williams played the entire first quarter and into the second. Brian T. Smithbsmith@sltrib.comTwitter: tribjazz
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