Utah Jazz cruise past Dallas with stellar second-half effort
Jazz hold the Mavericks to 31 points in 2nd half
Tom Smart, Deseret News
SALT LAKE CITY — Utah Jazz fans who participated in Halloween festivities, forcing them to arrive late to the team's 2012-13 season-opener at EnergySolutions Arena were in luck.
The Jazz saved their best treats — full-size candy bars, if you will — for the second half of their 113-94 blowout victory over the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday.
"It was a great game, man," Jazz starting small forward Marvin Williams said.
A great second-half, at least.
But, hey, they'll take it.
What started out as a challenging night — an eight-point halftime deficit — turned out to be about as easy stealing candy from a dressed-up baby for the Jazz.
The reason for the turnaround sounds as boring as getting Smarties while trick-or-treating, but defense certainly sparked this rout.
Utah held the Mavericks to 31 points on 20.9 percent shooting in the whole second half, which included a 37-13 landslide of a third quarter. That came after Dallas, a night after beating the Lakers 99-91 in L.A., scored 63 first-half points despite the absence of bigs Dirk Nowitzki (knee) and Chris Kaman (calf).
"Defense. Coach really came at half time and he really emphasized our effort on the defensive end," Williams said. "I think the starters really came out and tried to set the tone defensively in the second half and it really worked out for us."
Did it ever.
"When you get beat by 24 in a quarter, that is a convincing beating," Dallas coach Rick Carlisle said. "We just didn't match their aggression in the third, and that was the difference in the game."
This type of domination on the defensive end wasn't the only welcomed addition to the building.
The team's new Williamses — Mo and Marvin — spearheaded a third-quarter surge and led all scorers with 21 points apiece.
"They have been super all training camp and it's going to transfer all season long," Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin said of the Williamses. "These guys are very proud guys. They are true professionals."
Another veteran addition, Randy Foye, impressed in his first Jazz appearance as well, scoring 13 points as one of six Utah players in double figures.
The three Utah newbies played critical roles in the second half.
Mo Williams gave the Jazz, yep, some big Mo when he hit back-to-back 3-pointers in the third quarter after the teams were tied at 74-all.
Mo Williams followed that with an aggressive scoring drive, and Marvin Williams drilled a 3-pointer to cap off a Mav-breaking 11-0 run.
The small forward and Foye finished off an 18-2 run with buckets to end the third quarter. Foye, Utah's backup shooting guard, hit a pair of treys in the fourth quarter to squelch what amounted to Dallas' final breath, after the Mavs scored the first four points of the final period.
Marvin Williams credited about everybody but himself — from God to the 13 Jazz players who all suited up and played on his first opening night with a team other than Atlanta.
"I wanted to come out and be aggressive tonight, and Mo had the same mentality. You could really see it out there on the court," Marvin Williams said. "Coming out and playing with these guys … they've been awesome. Coach has been awesome for making me feel comfortable. My teammates have made me feel comfortable since I've been there. They make it really easy to play out there."
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