Utah Jazz: Foundation Five gives Jazz a fresh start, but Lillard leads Blazers past Jazz
"They played a good game. It was a real tough three quarters," Lillard said. "Other guys had it going for the most part, but in the fourth quarter it was a tight game down the stretch and I got a little more aggressive and I was able to make some things happen."
Burks’ insertion into the starting lineup wasn’t the only surprise Corbin had for Jazz fans.
Erratically used French rookie center Rudy Gobert made a first-quarter appearance, and the Stifle Tower quickly made his 7-foot-1 presence felt by blocking a shot.
Gobert was one of only four players to get off the bench, and finished with seven points and six rebounds. Although he only logged 11 minutes, that was more than he’d seen in the previous four games combined. It was just the second time since February that he had double-digit minutes.
“It feels good. I’ve been waiting for this moment,” Gobert said. “It feels good to play. I feel good. I’m in good shape. I was just trying to make it tough for the other team, protect the basket and block shots. I’m tall, so that’s what I like to do.”
Veteran forward Richard Jefferson scored eight points in his first reserve role of the season after starting in the other 79 games.
The Jazz were without Williams, who is suffering from a left knee bone bruise. The forward remained in Utah while the team traveled to Denver after Friday’s game and will not play against the Nuggets on Saturday.
“It’s always exiting to see a lot of familiar faces and a lot of people I’ve grown really close with,” said Lillard, who’s been named the Rookie of the Year and an All-Star since wrapping up his Weber State career in 2012. “I enjoy coming back.”
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