Favors, who had seven rebounds and three blocks, returned after missing the previous two games, including the OT home loss, with a sore lower back, while Marvin Williams (eight points, five assists) played after sitting out four straight, all losses, with heel inflammation in his right foot.
“I think the team is different with their presence on the defensive end, their communication skills,” Corbin said at the team’s morning shootaround. “The way the other guys respond to them on both ends of the floor. Offensively, we can (spread) things out. They’re a huge part of what we’re trying to do.”
That was evident from early on in this rout.
Corbin called a timeout just 1:48 into the game with a scoreless tie, and the Jazz came out guns blazing after that.
Utah went on a 7-2 run, endured a 5-0 spurt from the Kings and then dominated for most of the next 43 minutes.
Hayward gave the Jazz their first double-digit lead at 26-15 with a long jumper at the 2:23 mark of the first quarter.
Utah shot 58.1 percent in the first half and then really exploded after halftime, outscoring the Kings 38-26 in that decisive third quarter.
Point guard John Lucas III tossed an alley-oop pass to a soaring Jeremy Evans, who slammed in the victory’s exclamation mark over 7-footer Hamady Ndiaye with less than a minute left.
By that time, the remaining Kings fans were only left with one thing to cheer about: Jimmer Fredette. The former BYU star, who has rarely played this season, thrilled the crowd, setting off a “Jimmer! Jimmer!” chant in the closing moments when he hit a 3-pointer during his 13-point outing off the bench.
Other than that, however, it was mostly frustrating for the Kings, who received three technical fouls, saw rookie Ben McLemore miss two dunks four nights after hitting that critical late 3-pointer in Saturday’s win, and had their two-game win streak ended by a surprising Jazz team that began a brutal road stretch with a much-needed victory.
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