WASHINGTON — The Utah Jazz last played on the road Saturday night against the Washington Wizards, who may be forced to make a coaching change after losing their eighth game in a row to start the season under Randy Wittman.
The Jazz are back in action at home tonight to face another team with coaching issues.
Head coach Kevin McHale left the Houston Rockets for personal issues Nov. 10, but Utah is more concerned about facing James Harden, Jeremy Lin and company.
"As they go the team goes," Utah head coach Tyrone Corbin said of Harden and Lin.
Harden, traded from Oklahoma City to Houston before this season, averaged 26.7 points in his first nine games, while Lin averaged 10.9 points and 6.7 assists.
"Harden is a huge boost for them," Corbin said.
"He is a great player," Utah's DeMarre Carroll said of Harden. "They are a great team collectively. They have one guy who is pretty good, with All-Star status. We have to keep doing what we do. We have to play hard the entire game."
Chandler Parsons was averaging 13.1 points per game before Sunday's game against the Lakers and 7-footer Omer Asik, who is from Turkey, checked in at 11.1 points and 13.2 rebounds per outing in his first season with Houston.
What will it mean if McHale is still not with the team?
"When he is gone you (still) have to go out there and play as hard as you can," said Carroll, who had a career-high 17 points in a loss Friday at Philadelphia. "Of course, it will affect (Houston). But we have to play as hard as we can at home."
While the Jazz had the day off Sunday — following a flight from the East Coast — the Rockets are coming off a loss Sunday in Los Angeles against the Lakers, one team that has made a coaching change this month as Mike D'Antoni took over for the fired Mike Brown.
Lin played for D'Antoni last season with the Knicks.
The Rockets are 4-6 overall and 2-3 on the road after losing to the Lakers. Utah is 5-6 overall and 3-0 at home this year.
"We are going back to Salt Lake City. We have to take advantage of it," said Utah's Derrick Favors, who scored nine points with 10 rebounds in his first start Saturday at Washington. "We will come out with a lot of energy. They have new players but we will try to win that game."
Gordon Hayward, who scored 15 points off the bench Saturday at Washington, said it will be good to be back home following a 2-2 road trip. The Jazz came back from an 11-0 deficit to win 83-76 against the Wizards as the Utah bench had 33 points.
"It will be a big game for us," Hayward said. "They have guys that can score the basketball. It will be tough one."
Randy Foye and Favors started for the first time in 11 games Saturday while Marvin Williams and Hayward came off the bench after starting the first 10 contests.
Corbin did not commit to the same lineup Monday for Houston. "We will see," Corbin said after Saturday's game in the nation's capital.
"Whatever he decides to do is what my role is," Hayward said.1 comment on this story
What did Utah starter Al Jefferson, who had 21 points and 13 rebounds Saturday, think of the new starting lineup?
"We are used to playing with that big lineup," he said. "This is no excuse, the reason why we started off (losing in the first quarter) 0-11. Whatever the reason was, we got passed it and got it going."
Utah took the lead for good on a basket by Marvin Williams early in the fourth quarter and led by 11 points late in the game.
"It's always good to go on the road and bring back a win," said Carroll. "We are going back home now and that's where we want to be."