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Jazz's Hayward to start vs. Rockets; Williams, Kirilenko, Okur out

Published February 2, 2011 12:07 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2011, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Jazz coach Jerry Sloan said this morning that rookie forward Gordon Hayward will start tonight during a game against Houston at EnergySolutions Arena.

Utah's Deron Williams (wrist), Andrei Kirilenko (ankle) and Mehmet Okur (back) are out. Paul Millsap (left pinkie, right thumb) is a game-time decision.

Reserve point guard Earl Watson will start in place of Williams for the fourth consecutive game.

Kirilenko said that his ankle is sore and believes it is a day-to-day injury. He is unsure whether he will be able to play Friday at Denver.

Okur said that his injury is the same one he dealt with in early January. He is not sure when he will return to action, and acknowledged that he might have come back too soon and pushed himself too hard when recovering from past injuries this season. He plans to work on his conditioning during the interim, and does not plan to take the court until he is 100 percent.

— Brian T. Smith

Twitter: tribjazz