"I think tonight we did a pretty good job to kind of force him to take bad shots rather than good shots," Kirilenko added. "Make him play uncomfortable game."
Meanwhile, the Jazz offense was quite comfortable.
C.J. Miles found his shooting touch to score 21 points on 8-for-13 shooting off the bench. Kirilenko put up 19 points for the second straight game, and Jefferson totaled his first double-double in a Jazz uniform with 23 points and 10 rebounds.
Overall, the Jazz shot 53 percent and finished with 32 assists on 44 field goals. Utah struggled for a while against a suffocating OKC press, which allowed the Thunder to pull within 15 in the third, but the Jazz regrouped and finished strong.
"We need all that. Andrei made some shots. Paul Millsap had a terrific game," Sloan said. "I thought everybody that played, played hard, and we had to beat this team here or anywhere really because they're very difficult for us to guard."
Conversely, the previously unbeaten Thunder (2-1) only dished out 10 assists and shot 40 percent in a surprising mismatch. Durant even said OKC didn't have energy and got out-executed — something strikingly similar to what the Jazz were recently saying.
"We got outplayed tonight right from the start," said OKC coach Scott Brooks, whose Thunder won three of four against Utah last season. "The better team won tonight and there's nothing else you can say about it. They outplayed us in all phases of the game — passing, shooting, defending, rebounding, scoring in the paint."
As far as the Jazz are concerned, it's about time that came out of the mouth of somebody not associated with the team in Utah uniforms.
e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org TWITTER: DJJazzyJody
- Warriors cap greatest Finals collapse with...
- LeBron James wins NBA Finals MVP for 3rd time
- NBC to unveil new theme song for 'Sunday...
- From Ben Simmons down, international players...
- Facing Argentina, Messi in Copa semis not...
- WNBA undefeated: Lynx host Sparks for 20th...
- Cleveland set to hold parade for NBA champion...
- Deseret News podcast: 2016 NBA draft preview
- Morning links: Athlon ranks Utah FBS... 89
- BYU football receives commitment from... 62
- Utah football to host Weber State in 2021 41
- Kyle Whittingham says Utah Utes... 37
- Utah Jazz to acquire Indiana Pacers PG... 37
- Jakob Poeltl to the Utah Jazz? It's... 25
- Morning links: Warriors feel Andrew... 22
- Morning links: ESPN analysts critical... 22