Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
Los Angeles Clippers power forward Blake Griffin, left, puts his hand on the head of Utah Jazz power forward Derrick Favors during the first half of their preseason NBA basketball game on Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2013, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Utah Jazz: Clips’ Rivers say Jazz may face difficult year
First Published Oct 23 2013 08:16 pm • Last Updated Feb 14 2014 11:36 pm

Los Angeles • Doc Rivers has a "man crush" on Gordon Hayward.

Asked about the Jazz’s fourth-year swingman before Wednesday night’s preseason game and the Clippers head coach had to interrupt.

At a glance


O Four of Utah’s starting five score in double figures, led by forward Derrick Favors, who tallies 24 points.

» The Jazz lose 103-99 to the Clippers for their sixth straight loss.

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

"I have a man crush on that guy," Rivers said. "He’s really good."

But Rivers also foresees a tough year ahead for the promising Hayward. As he spoke to reporters before the game, Rivers reflected back on his time as the head coach of the Orlando Magic, when Grant Hill was out with an injury and Tracy McGrady became the team’s only real scoring threat.

"I just always felt bad for [McGrady]," he said. "When you’re the guy and you’re the only guy for a while — there’s other guys, but I’m talking superstar — that’s a hard job and Gordon will find that out this year."

Hayward was able to share the workload Wednesday night, as four of the Jazz’s starting five hit double-figures, led by power forward Derrick Favor’s 24 points and 16 rebounds. But the Jazz still left Staples Center with a win, falling to the Clippers 103-99. It was Utah’s sixth straight preseason loss.

"After last night, a tough loss against the Lakers, I thought we responded well," Jazz coach Ty Corbin said. "We saw what we wanted to see: the fight in this group."

Even in defeat, it was the best outing of the preseason for the 6-foot-10 Favors, who showed off a variety of low-post moves, spinning and hitting soft left-handed shots and later drawing contact and using his 260-plus pounds to finish at the rim.

The Clippers’ high-flying frontcourt opened the game up with a flurry of dunks.

But the insertion of rookie center Rudy Gobert into the lineup gave Utah some extra help in grounding the two. Gobert blocked five shots and grabbed 12 rebounds in 20 minutes on the floor.

story continues below
story continues below

But the 7-foot-2 Frenchman was not completely safe in Lob City. In the third quarter, point guard Chris Paul hit the cutting Blake Griffin with a bounce pass and the former Slam Dunk champ gave Gobert a first-hand look at his skills.

"I thought about blocking him," Gobert said. "But when I saw him in the air, it’s too late. I said, ‘It’s too late.’"

After being blown out by the Clippers, 106-74, earlier this month in Salt Lake City, the Jazz put on a much better showing Wednesday night in Los Angeles.

"There’s a lot of positives," Corbin said. "We grew a lot tonight. We got better tonight."

Hayward finished the night with 19 points, six rebounds and five assists in the loss. The 6-6 swingman showed off his outside shooting and used his size at the 2-guard spot to his advantage, in one sequence blocking J.J. Redick and then posting up the Clippers guard for a layup.

For the Clippers, Paul enjoyed a solid night, and took advantage of extended minutes against Utah’s Scott Machado, a free agent trying to win a roster spot with the Jazz. Paul scored 14 and added 10 assists. He lobbed up passes to Griffin and DeAndre Jordan in the paint and kicked out to Redick — who finished 3 of 7 from 3-point range — when the defense cheated toward the hoop.

Griffin tallied 15 points and six rebounds for L.A.

With the win, the Clippers improve to 5-2 in the preseason. The Jazz fall to 1-6.

The Jazz will remain in Southern California, finishing out the preseason schedule Friday against the Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers’ bench erupted for 74 points in a 108-94 win over Utah on Tuesday.


Twitter: @tribjazz

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment

About Reader Comments

Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.