The Jazz were headed nowhere fast.
In a game featuring little execution and less emotion, Dallas owned an 82-76 lead in the opening moments of the fourth quarter Monday night at EnergySolutions Arena.
Enter Derrick Favors.
After being called for an offensive foul while posting up against Dirk Nowitzki, he stepped into the Mavericks' All-Star on the defensive end.
Favors slapped away the ball on a drive before wrestling Nowitzki to the ground as they pursued it.
Favors was called for another foul, but everybody suddenly seemed to care.
The Jazz. The Mavs. The crowd of 18,600.
It was exactly the kind of play the struggling Jazz needed, and they responded by dominating the final 11 minutes with their defense in a 100-94 victory.
"I thought it was a momentum-builder," Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin. "Everybody [became] determined they weren't going to let anybody run over them; we were going to fight the entire time. I thought that was a big play to get us going. From there, we just picked it up."
Asked about the play, Favors shook his head slightly.
"I just got physical," he said. I'm going to make them call something."
Did he sense his foul energized the Jazz?
"I don't really know," he said. "My head was going around. ... Like I said, I just got physical."
After Favors' foul, Dallas rookie Jae Crowder missed a 3-point shot. Gordon Hayward followed by blocking Rodrigue Beaubois' dunk.
The Jazz stopped the Mavs' next four possessions, too, and used a 6-0 run to get back in the game.
"I thought on the defensive end we were really in tune with what was going on," Corbin said. "We played with the right sense of urgency."
With six minutes left, however, the Jazz still trailed by six.
It was 86-80 when Utah's defense made seven straight stops, starting with three turnovers and a shot by Nowitzki that went off the side of the backboard.
The Jazz used a 13-0 run to overtake Dallas.
"We just kept fighting," Alec Burks said. "When you keep fighting, a lot of things happen. When you play hard, a lot of things go your way."
Al Jefferson agreed.
"We knew we had to do it on the defensive end," he said.