Utah Jazz notebook: Derrick Favors plays well in increased minutes
Tom Smart, Deseret News
SALT LAKE CITY — Derrick Favors got his minutes Saturday night.
But it didn't make any difference in the outcome as the Jazz were beaten by San Antonio for the third time in three playoff games.
After Favors played just 47 minutes total in the first two playoff games, during which time the Jazz actually outscored the Spurs, a lot of armchair quarterbacks wondered why he wasn't playing more.
Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin shrugged off the criticism, saying, "We'll see — at times it's good for us and at times it's not," about using Favors with Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap at the same time.
Saturday Corbin increased Favors' minutes, leaving him on the floor for the last 16 minutes of each half as he played 31:45 for the game.
Corbin was happy with Favors' overall play as he had a strong outing with 15 points and 11 rebounds.
In the first half, Favors had seven points and seven rebounds. Favors elicited perhaps the loudest cheers of the night when he stuffed Tiago Splitter as he attempted a dunk early in the second quarter.
The one downside to Favors' game was his shooting as he made just 5 of 14 from the floor and 5 of 10 from the free throw line.
OFF THE MARK: During the regular season, the Jazz made 75.4 percent of their free throws. In the first two playoff games they shot 83.3 percent.
Saturday night the Jazz were an abysmal 53 percent, making just 14 of 26 from the line.
Corbin was well aware of the Jazz's poor shooting, pointing out that the Jazz lost by 12 and missed 12 free throws.
"We just have to make our free throws," he said.
San Antonio finished with 17 of 22 from the line.
BIG SHOT: Spurs' reserve Matt Bonner came in with 3:51 left in the first quarter and picked up three quick fouls before the quarter was over.
However, Bonner made perhaps the biggest shot of the night when he hit a 3-pointer at the halftime buzzer off a designed play on a timeout with 3.4 seconds left. Manu Ginobili drove down the middle and fired a pass to Bonner in the right corner for the 3-pointer that gave the Spurs the lead at 52-50.
LAST TIME: The Jazz and Spurs have played each other four previous times in the playoffs. It might seem like the Spurs have dominated, but that's because, the latest Jazz-Spurs series in 2007 was a blowout for San Antonio, which won in five games.
The other three series between the two teams were won by the Jazz — a 3-1 first-round series win in 1994, a 4-2 second-round win in 1996 and a 4-1 second-round win in 1998.
In 2007, in the Western Conference finals, the Jazz came back to Salt Lake after losing two in San Antonio and blew out the Spurs 109-83 in Game 3, only to lose Game 4, 91-79.
MISC: The Jazz outrebounded the Spurs 49-41 with Millsap, Jefferson and Favors getting 11 apiece. The Jazz had 17 rebounds offensive rebounds . . . The Jazz are now 20-5 all time in Game 3s played at home . . . Former Jazz point guard John Stockton and former Jazz coach Jerry Sloan were both in the EnergySolutions crowd watching the game . . . The last time the Jazz came home down 2-0 in a series was in 2010 when they lost to the Lakers 111-110 in Game 3 of the Conference Semifinals. They also lost Game 4 . . . Since drafting Tim Duncan in 1997, the Spurs are 14-1 in series where they took a 2-0 lead . . . Jazz guard Raja Bell, who didn't play in the first two playoff games despite being healthy, didn't play again Saturday night. His last action with the Jazz was on March 25.
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